Newest Atlanta Dream Shoni Schimmel – 8th pick in First Round of 2914 WNBA Draft. Photo Courtesy: NDNSports.com
Dreams really do come true!! Just have to believe!!!—Atlanta Dream Shoni Schimmel
UNCASVILLE, CONNECTICUT— The star of “Off the Rez,” Shoni Schimmel was drafted in the first-round by the Atlanta Dream on Monday night, April 14, 2014, in the 2014 WNBA Draft at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.
With her entry into the WNBA, Schimmel, who grew up in Mission, Oregon on the Umatilla Indian Reservation, has realized a dream she has had since her early formative years.
“It’s a blessing just to be in the WNBA…it truly is…I think I can bring a little flavor to the league,” said Schimmel after being chosen by Atlanta.
Later she posted this message on Instagram:
DREAM BIG!!! It’s been my dream since day one to be able to play in the WNBA and it’s all falling into place. Dreams really do come true!! Just have to believe!!!
From “Off the Rez” — Photo Courtesy NDNSports.com
Schimmel was a standout player for the Louisville Cardinals women’s basketball team, where she became the second highest scorer in the team’s history.
Many sports commentators had predicted Schimmel would be going at No.11 in the draft. However, she was chosen eighth overall.
Shoni Schimmel (center) with parents, Rick & Ceci. Photo Courtesy NDNSports.com
Schimmel and her sister Jude have become an inspiration across Indian country. Both became the first American Indians to ever play in a NCAA national basketball championship last year in New Orleans. Indian country was further inspired when Schimmel help lead her team to the Elite Eight in the NCAA tournament this year.
Schimmel had a strong senior year at Louisville by breaking several team records and led the team as top scorer, which further helped her in the draft.
Shoni and her family gained national exposure in 2011 with the documentary film, “Off the Rez,” which chronicled Shoni’s junior and senior high school years playing basketball. Her parents moved Shoni and her siblings off the Umatilla Indian Reservation to Portland, Oregon where she played for Portland’s Franklin High School.