Freshman Nikki Moore important member of the Kent State gymnastics team

Tyler Goddard

Freshman Nikki Moore has quickly made an impact for the No. 14 Kent State gymnastics team based on her hard work and dedication to the team’s goals.

“I just wanted to make a big impact as a freshman,” Moore said. “I picked Kent State because I really liked how [Kent State coach Brice Biggin] had everything planned out.”

Moore said the team is a big deal, and she didn’t see that same camaraderie with other schools she visited.

“You cannot reach your goals by yourself,” she said. “You need each other.”

Biggin said he and the other coaches knew coming in that Moore was a very talented individual and had a lot of potential.

“She has made some pretty nice changes so far in her gymnastics and has become a better gymnast already,” Biggin said. “She is competing in three events for us right now, and as a freshman that’s a big accomplishment.”

Moore said she didn’t feel any added pressure upon joining the team and just went with the flow. “Feeling confident and working hard is key,” she said. “Knowing if they believe in me, and prove I deserve a spot, then I would get that spot.”

Moore credits her success with being able to visualize herself practicing in the gymnastics room during meets.

“It’s no different than actual practice, and it’s as if I’m home even when we are away,” she said.

Biggin described Moore as very calm and relaxed.

“The trait of a good gymnast is when it gets intense, and a lot is on the line, the ability to stay calm can be very important,” he said.

Moore continues to set goals for herself and always sees ways to improve.

“I know I can do better on the floor exercise and improve with little details on the beam and hit everything with no wobbles,” Moore said. “Bri [Brianna Skiffington] was my influence for beam and was always there for me, but everyone on the team has different spots where they can help too.”

In Moore’s young career, she continues to break personal bests in her events. She set a new personal best on the vault with a 9.825 during Kent State’s first-place tie in Cleveland earlier this season.

Moore’s other career highs include a 9.800 on the balance beam and 9.775 on the floor exercise.

“With her competing in three events, she is crucial to our success,” Biggin said.

Contact Tyler Goddard at [email protected].