Penn’s Lia Thomas wins two races at tri-meet, loses 100 freestyle yards to transgender swimmer from Yale
University of Pennsylvania transgender swimmer Lia Thomas won the 200 and 500-meter freestyle and finished fifth in the 100-meter freestyle in the school’s tri-meet with Yale and Dartmouth.
Thomas finished about two seconds ahead of his opponents with a time of 1: 48.73 in the 200 freestyle. She missed out on setting an NCAA record held by Olympian Missy Franklin, who finished the event in 1: 39.10 in 2015. Thomas was not as dominant as she was in the Zippy Invitational in Akron last month.
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Thomas narrowly won the 500 freestyle, according to the Daily Mail.
She faced a real challenge in the 100m freestyle of Yale’s Iszac Henig, who is transitioning from female to male status. Henig clocked 49.57 seconds with Thomas finishing behind him with a time of 52.84 seconds.
Henig, a California native who has competed for Yale since 2018, stunned limited spectators at the race.
“I wasn’t prepared for this. It’s all messed up. I can’t figure this out. The NCAA needs to do something about it. They need to bring science into the decision and the discussion,” said a parent at Penn. at The Daily Mail.
Henig had his breasts removed, but wrote in a New York Times column in June that he wasn’t taking hormones yet because he wanted to compete in the pool.
“As a student-athlete, coming out as a trans type put me in a weird position. I could start using hormones to align myself more with myself, or wait, make a social transition and keep going. to compete in a women’s swim team. I chose the latter option, “Henig wrote.
“I appreciate my contributions to the team and I recognize that my childhood doesn’t depend on having more or less testosterone in my veins. At least that’s what I’ll try to remember when I will put on the women’s swimsuit for the competition and I remember one me that I no longer feel attached to. “
LIA THOMAS FINDS SUPPORT FROM PENN, IVY LEAGUE BEFORE WEEKEND MEETING
Henig’s specialty in the pool is freestyle and butterfly.
Thomas’ frenetic pace in the pool caught the attention of those wondering if transgender women should compete with biological men. Thomas received support from the Ivy League and Penn earlier in the week.
“For the past several years, Lia and the University of Pennsylvania have worked with the NCAA to follow all appropriate protocols in order to comply with the NCAA policy on the participation of transgender athletes and participating in the Women’s Team. Penn’s swimming and diving. The Ivy League has adopted and enforces the same NCAA policy, “the conference said in a statement Thursday.
“The Ivy League reaffirms its unwavering commitment to providing an inclusive environment for all student-athletes while condemning transphobia and discrimination in all its forms.
“The league is thrilled with its participation in the sport of women’s swimming and diving and looks forward to celebrating the success of all of our student-athletes throughout the season.
Penn Athletics also released a statement.
“Penn Athletics is committed to being a welcoming and inclusive environment for all of our student-athletes, coaches and staff, and we stand by that commitment today and into the future,” the school said.
“As a member of the NCAA, Penn is governed by the policies of the National Governing Body. Lia Thomas has met or exceeded all NCAA protocols in the past two years for a transgender student-athlete to compete for a women’s team and will continue to represent the Penn Women’s Swim Team in competition this season.
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“We fully support all of the student-athletes and coaches in our swim and diving program and look forward to the continued success of the team this season. “