By Ren Clayton

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — “It’s kind of like a dance,” explained Shelby Frank, describing the sport of throwing discus.

“You can make it look effortless or you can make it not look effortless. The way it flies out of your hand, it looks simple, but it’s really not. And it takes a lot work and a lot of patience.”

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Frank waltzed her way into the University of Minnesota record books on Saturday in Louisiana, launching her fifth throw of the meet 190 feet and three inches.

“I was super excited,” Frank said. “I got a huge response on social media. And obviously that’s always good to see. It’s always good to hear those kinds of things. But I feel for me, I’m never really satisfied with how I do. And so this isn’t my top mark. I’m gonna just keep building from here.”

(credit: CBS)

It was Frank’s first time setting a school record at any level. Surprising for an athlete of her caliber. The COVID year at Red River High School in Grand Forks, North Dakota, kept her from setting that mark.

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“My school is known for throwing disc, which is kinda crazy,” Frank said. “So for me coming here, I really wanted to do that. But I actually didn’t know the all-time mark.

Frank’s throw is currently No 5 nationally and best in the Big Ten.

“She kind of checks all those boxes of talent, and emotional stability, competitiveness, and then work ethic,” said Peter Miller, the Gophers throws coach.

“Now that I can build off that, now I’m competing against myself, which is what I do normally,” Frank said.

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The best ever women’s Gopher discus thrower has over half her college career to look forward to. She’ll do it, dancing to her own tune.

Ren Clayton