High School Track Star Signals Her Dismay After Being Ousted From Championship By Boy
John Coletti/Getty Images

A California high school senior appeared to give a thumbs-down to spectators as she stood on the podium, having lost her chance to compete in the girls’ state championships because a high school boy finished ahead of her.

Adeline Johnson, a senior at Branson High School, finished fourth in the girls’ 1,600-meter run at the North Coast Meet of Champions of California finals in Dublin, California, on Saturday. Athena Ryan, a junior from Sonoma Academy who claims he is a girl, finished second; the top three finishers qualified for the California Interscholastic Federation State Track & Field Championships next week.

“As a former CA state champion high jumper, I think this is complete and utter nonsense. I’m embarrassed for our state and feel sorry for the girls who were cheated in the process,” Darren Marble, who won the California state championship in the high jump in 1998, tweeted.

“I wasn’t expecting that,” Ryan said after the race. “I dropped like 17 seconds on my season’s best in the past two weeks. After last weekend, I didn’t think I could run low 5s again. I was just coming here trying to break 5 – just glad I finished it out.”

“Security removed women from the field seen holding signs in support of girls in the sectional meet,” reported the Independent Council on Women’s Sports, which describes itself as a “network of women athletes & our supporters advocating for female protected categories in sport,” adding “Many parents were completely unaware there was a boy competing in girls races.”

One apparent protester against allowing boys in girls’ sports tweeted, “We were there. Many came to us as we protested to thank us and say they couldn’t speak up themselves. Organizers told us we ‘were in the wrong place for a protest.’ We snapped back with, ‘we are in EXACTLY the right place, right now. Incl boys in girls race is excluding girls.’”

In one exchange, a woman verbally attacked the protesters as she walked by them, snapping, “That is disgusting. I find that f***ing offensive.”

“Which part?” a protester responded. “Which part is disgusting? The women part?”

“It shouldn’t even f***ing matter,” the angry woman snapped again. “And it’s none of your business what someone else does. That’s offensive.”

“Watch the man’s race and see the difference,” a protester called after her, prompting the woman to turn back and yell, ““You have f***ing issues. I feel f***ing sorry for all your sorry a**es.”

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