Athlete Spotlight is sponsored by Mojo Up Sports Complex.

Every obstacle and challenge has made the journey worth it for 2024 Fishers high school grad Joirdyn Smith. She has committed to Clark Atlanta University on a basketball scholarship and has an extensive list of achievements, including state runner-up, all-HCC team, sectional 8 champion, All-USA Central Indiana Super Team honorable mention, and Indiana Basketball Coaches Association top 100. She also lettered at the varsity level for four years and was an Indiana basketball all-star.

Smith says Mojo Up Sports Complex helped up her game since they first opened in late 2018, improving day by day. “It’s become a second home for me,” she says. “I’d say I’m at the facility almost every day of the week.”

Her time at the multipurpose facility has given her some favorable memories, such as June ball and her high school summer league games, as well as some encouraging moments that uplifted her sports career.

“My trainer, Nick Daniels, means a lot to me,” she says. “He’s seen me at my lowest points and he’s seen me at my highest. At times I wanted to give up and he never let me. He inspires me every day to be the best version of myself.”

Smith has been able to find her best self through her strong mentality in the face of hardships, leaning on forces outside of the game of basketball.

“I’ve faced many challenges such as being under-recruited, not-so-pleasant coaches, injuries, bad games, etcetera,” she says. “When I was younger many of those challenges affected my motivation and confidence. As I’ve gotten older and more mentally mature, I’ve learned to embrace the challenges and to always control what I can control. The moment I stopped viewing basketball as my identity is the moment I enjoyed it regardless of the challenges I will face along the way. ”

As she continues her basketball career at the collegiate level, Smith looks forward to the competition that awaits her with some new goals in mind.

“I’m excited to be with a group of new people for the next four years,” she says. “I’m also looking forward to the maturation of my game, being under collegiate development. I’ve won at every level I’ve played at, so I’d say a goal I have for college is to win there as well. My biggest goal this season is to win a conference championship and make it to the big dance.”

Every goal, accomplishment and reward won aside, Smith brings it all back to her main motivator.

“What motivates me to play are the little girls who look up to me,” she says. “I want to go hard for little girls who look like me, and I want to show them that if I can do it, you can too. One of the coolest parts about playing the game of basketball is the little fans you gain along the way. The love and support I receive makes me have an immense amount of gratitude. It makes all the hard nights and hard work all worth it.”

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