By Cheryl Clemens
Most athletes’ careers begin on a court or a field. University of Maryland basketball player Tianna Hawkins’ began in a grocery store in Upper Marlboro.
That’s where a community league basketball coach spotted her and her twin, Tierra, and was struck by how tall they were. Even though they were only eighth graders, the girls were nearing 6 feet tall.
“He asked me if they played basketball and when I said no, he invited them out to a game,” recalls their mother, Latanya Hawkins of Clinton.
Tianna remembers that day clearly. “We’d never played basketball, but he put us in and just told us what to do. I remember running up and down the court not knowing what I was doing, but it was a lot of fun.”