Bridgeport High has New D-I Athlete in Kaylie Bokey, Newest Bowling Green Gymnastics Team Member

By Jeff Toquinto on January 14, 2021 via Connect-Bridgeport.com

Bridgeport High School has a new Division I athlete. It may be a name some who follow high school sports are not familiar with – and for a good reason.
 
Recently, Kaylie Bokey signed a letter of intent to compete in gymnastics for Bowling Green University. With BHS not having a gymnastics program, Bokey has spent most of her time training for this opportunity out of the area.
 
The training, as the Division I offer indicates, paid off. She was joined by family, friends, and coaches during a recent signing ceremony that has her as the newest member of the Falcons.
 
Why BGU?
 
“I really liked how the campus was laid out and everything was pretty much altogether,” said Bokey. “I loved how the classroom sizes were smaller and I felt a good connection with Coach (Kerrie) Turner.”
 
Bokey also knows what she plans on studying.
 
“I plan to pursue a degree in nursing,” said Bokey. “I’ve always loved helping people and hope to work with children.”
 
The nursing field requires discipline and a lot of time preparing to earn a degree. There is a good chance her discipline and training for gymnastics already has her pointing in the right direction.
 
Since she was six years old, Bokey has focused on the sport. And in recent years, she has gone well beyond the borders of Bridgeport to train. The BHS senior spends four weekdays and one day each weekend – 20 hours each week throughout the year – training at Gymniks Gymnastics in Vienna (Wood County).
 
“Sometimes the travel is hard because (the gym) is an hour and a half away … but I’ve been doing for so long I wanted to continue doing it,” said Bokey. “This is the gym I want to be at so I can deal with the drive.”
 
The result of the trips and training have Bokey as a Level 10 gymnast, which is the highest level in the USA Gymnastics Woman's Development Program (previously named the Woman's Junior Olympic Program). Along with numerous state titles, she has qualified for USA Gymnastics Region 7 Regionals in 2018 and 2019. The 2020 Regional was canceled due to COVID-19. 
 
“I’ve been competing for 10 years now,” the 17-year-old said. “I’m very excited for this new chapter in my life.”
 
Bokey said her best events are the uneven bars and the floor exercises. She said she will be working on her vault and consistency in all other areas of gymnastics and the skill sets required to improve.
 
Until heading to Bowling Green, Bokey will continue to compete with Gymniks competitive team that is under the Junior Olympic Program. Sheis coached by Nikki Thompson (gym owner), Elizabeth "Liz" Nulter, Angela Way, and Connie Barnes.
 
Bokey said she is grateful for her coaches, teammates, family, and friends who have provided support and encouragement.
 
Editor's Note: Top photo shows Kaylie Bokey, middle with, from left, mother Lori Bokey, and Coach Nikki Thompson, Second row, from left, are father, Stacy Bokey, and coaches Liz Nulter, Angela Way, and Connie Barnes. Second photo is of Kaylie on the uneven bars, while she's shown below in a portrait shot. All photos courtesy of Lori Bokey. Bottom photo by Lisa Sherwood Ross of L&S Photography.


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