By Thomas Sellers Jr.
The numbers speak for Jordan Moore.
For four years she’s been one of the best volleyball players in the Shelby-Metro area. The Munford Lady Cougar took a limited senior season because of the global pandemic and still posted numbers better than most of her locally recognized peers.
Moore tallied 251 kills along with 172 digs. Her blocks and aces are among the highest in the area.
So it was no shock on Feb. 2 Moore was in the Munford High School Cafeteria alongside teammates, coaches, administrators and her parents Vicky Moore and JT Lowe signing her national letter of intent.
The All-District middle blocker will continue her volleyball career across the state at Walters State Community College in Morristown.
As Moore and those closest to her celebrated the signing for her to become a Lady Senator, her play on the court took a backseat. All in attendance beam with joy happy for Moore reaching her dream.
From teammates to coaches, the group kept bragging on Moore as a person.
“Jordan is as humble as they come,” Munford Volleyball Coach Sean Bounds said. “She’s a great human. But the moment that whistle blows on the court, she become a beast. But she’s respectful. She just lets her game do all the talking. Her actions, every thing she does instills pride not just to the program but to the crowd, on and off the court.”
It was Bounds who witnessed the potential of a young girl in middle school. As one of the tallest people in her school, Moore was always asked to play basketball, but her passion was on a different court. Bounds said volleyball and Moore were meant to be together.
“Absolutely from day one, she just had a natural ability to be at the right place,” he noted. “Granted the confidence wasn’t quite there because things were new to her. But you could tell just by looking at her, that her hand-eye coordination was just there. It’s one of those things hard to teach. So when somebody just has it naturally, she’s definitely one of those athletes.”
Munford Volleyball Coach Mandy Hopper was introduced to Moore’s grace, athleticism and ferociousness on the court shortly after Bounds.
“Her as an athlete, I got to see her as a freshman,” Hopper recalled. “I was like, ‘Oh, I think we can handle this.’ I was glad I was on the same side as her going into her sophomore because every year she got better. She was working hard at Metro. She’s developed into a phenomenal player. To see her talent on the floor even during practice time, she’s an absolute beast. I wouldn’t want her on another team. I’m so glad she’s on my side.”
Big plays became a part of Moore’s reputation at Munford. She delivered clutch spikes at the net and blocked opponents in close games. As an upperclassman, Moore was a weapon with her serving and on the back row.
“Last two years she’s played around for us,” Hopper noted. “So defensively to have her play middle back, long arms and long body. Just when you thought a ball was going to just get into the edge of the court, she was there laying her body out. Her reach that she has on the back is wonderful.”
Hopper said the staff at Walters State has a high-caliber player and person willing to learn on the team with Moore.
“On the court they’re going to get somebody who is welling to listen to any input they have,” she said. “To tweak how she plays, she will listen to everything they have to say. She’ll make adjustments on the fly. She will do everything she can to please her coaches and to showcase what she’s got.”
Walters State is a part of the NJCAA’s Tennessee Community College Athletic Association. The Lady Senators are led by Head Coach Megan Blaylock. Vicky Moore said she is happy with her child’s landing spot.
“We went through the different schools and the rotation,” Vicky recalled. “We went to talk to the coach and the administration. We looked at the stuff online. It was very interesting with the stuff she wants to do after leaving there. She plans on going to the East Tennessee State University. And she’s striving to go overseas and play. We’re just keeping our fingers crossed on that.”
Moore, the sister of Jazani, Jakari, Jedrick and Jawain, has been motivated since her freshman year to earn a signing day.
“I would say hard work and determination got her here today,” Vicky said. “Along with her knowing her strengths and willing to work on her weaknesses. And she strive to do her best in it.
“It was more being at Metro doing extra practices,” she added. “She would ask Coach Sean for more assistance. She was not afraid to ask for more help to get her to the level where she could play all around.”
Lowe noted his daughter had the physical ability to play any sport but volleyball tackled her mind as well.
“Volleyball gave her more of a challenge,” he said. “Every years she to take her game to the next level. That’s what she did. She’ll play a game, if it was a hard loss, she was like what do I have to work on. I think volleyball gave her more challenges.”
Lowe, a Navy veteran, and Vicky, an Army veteran, taught Jordan important life lessons that assisted her on the volleyball court to reach her dream.
“We both had something to do with it,” he said. “We’re both military veterans. We tell our children, ‘You treat people like you want to be treated. Respect is earned not always given.’ That’s one of the things we pride ourselves on. No matter what you’re going through always treat people with respect and how you would want to be treats.”
Jordan taking those lessons to heart will make her missed by her school, teammate and coaches as a player but especially as a person. When asked ‘Which you would rank higher, the player or the person?’ both Munford Volleyball coaches had a similar conclusion.
“I’m going to say the person because the person will drive the athlete everyday,” Bounds said. “I don’t think I met a more beautiful human being than Jordan. That goes all around on and off the court. She’s amazing.”
“I going to go with the person just because I coached players that didn’t have the team personality that had the athleticism,” Hopper concluded. “She has all of it and that makes the difference in me wanting to be a part of whatever she has to offer.”