Photo courtesy of Deirdre Woodard.

What a performance tonight from Jessica Woodard!

The Marlton native and Cherokee graduate threw a massive shot put PR of 62-3 3/4 Thursday night in Tucson, the No. 8 throw in the world this year and No. 4 by an American woman.

Woodard’s previous PR was 61-3 1/4 and her previous season best was 60-9 1/2 in Walnut, Calif., two weeks ago. 

She moved up from No. 27 to No. 17 in U.S. history going into next month’s U.S. Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore. 

Woodard’s throw is only four inches of the 42-year-old New Jersey alumni record of 62-7 3/4, set at the AAU (U.S.) Championships on June 11, 1979, at Mount San Antonio College in Walnut, Calif., by 11-time U.S. champion Maren Seidler, a two-time Olympian and a graduate of Governor Livingston High School in Berkeley Heights. That was the U.S. record for six years 

Woodard was competing at the USATF’ Throws Festival at the University of Arizona’s Drachman Stadium.

Woodard opened with throws of 58-4 1/2 and 58-10 before a foul on her third throw. Then she hit back-to-back 60-footers, a 60-5 3/4 and the 62-3 3/4 before closing with another foul.


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