- 1 of 2 Photos | View More Photos
Danniel Thomas became Kent State's first female to capture a national track and field championship when she unleashed a record-shattering heave of 62-10 in the shot put at the 2017 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships Thursday night at Historic Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.
The throw by the Golden Flashes' redshirt senior from Jamaica set an NCAA Championship meet record, currently ranks fourth in the world, and is the second-best collegiate throw of all time.
Thomas, who finished runner-up in the discus at the 2014 NCAA Championships, entered this year's national event ranked second in the country in the shot put with a Kent State, Mid-American Conference and Jamaican national record toss of 60-8. She bettered that mark twice on Thursday, also recording a throw of 62-2.25 that's the fourth-best collegiate mark of all time.
Thomas is the fourth national champion in Kent State track and field history. She joins Matthias Tayala, who captured the men's hammer throw title in 2014, along with Al Schoterman in the hammer in 1972 and Jacques Accambray in the hammer throw in 1973.
Thomas earned MAC titles in the shot put and discus during the 2017 outdoor season, bringing her MAC title total to six in the shot put alone. She represented Jamaica in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, placing 25th in the shot put.
Thomas will also compete in the discus on Saturday in Eugene. She's seeded fourth in that event.
On Wednesday, Kent State's Samory Fraga made his debut at the NCAA Championships and finished 23rd in the men's long jump with a leap of 22-11.25 to earn Honorable Mention All-American honors.
FYI: As I recall Al Schoterman was national champion in the Hammer Throw in 1972 and Jacques Accambray was champion in the Hammer Throw in 1973. So, Dannil is the fourth national champion in Kent State Track Field history.