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University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas — a male who used to go by “Will,” but now claims transgender identity and competes on the women’s team — clinched the title of “High-Point Swimmer of the Meet” at the Ivy League Swimming and Diving Championships over the weekend.
Thomas won three races — the 100-yard freestyle, 200-yard freestyle, and 500-yard freestyle — and set five individual records. Thomas also helped Penn’s 400 relay team set a pool record. The controversial athlete earned the “High-Point Swimmer of the Meet” distinction by earning the maximum 96 points overall, according to the Ivy League.
On Saturday, one of Thomas’ female teammates reacted to the outcome of the championships in an exclusive interview with The Daily Wire by explaining that Thomas’ ability to vastly outcompete female athletes drains the competition of its excitement.
“For a lot of the other girls on our team who are really talented … if they win the race, it would be a question whether they would win. It’s like, ‘Oh yeah, they got first and we weren’t sure if they were going to beat that girl from Harvard, or that girl from Princeton.’ But with Lia, we went into the meet knowing that she was going to win all of these events. It’s kind of when you know the outcome already, it’s not so exciting when it does eventually happen,” the swimmer said.
The swimmer also noted that the women who placed behind Thomas appear to recognize that they have been slighted.
“I think that there’s not really room for anyone to react to this situation in any way, other than saying they think it’s really progressive and the right thing,” said the swimmer, referring to the environment of censorship at Ivy League universities. “The one thing I will say is if you want to tune into the livestreams and watch these podiums — not just the races, the podiums — and you look at the faces of the girls who are second, third … you see a smile, but they can only hold it up for so long. You can kind of see a little bit of sadness knowing that maybe they would be first.”
In reaction to the team members who have raised their concerns with the media, others have voiced support for Thomas’ ability to compete on the female team. “We want to express our full support for Lia in her transition,” the athletes said. “We value her as a person, teammate, and friend. The sentiments put forward by an anonymous member of our team are not representative of the feelings, values, and opinions of the entire Penn team, composed of 39 women with diverse backgrounds.”
Thomas has repeatedly made national headlines over the past several months, however, the Biden administration — which has enacted several executive orders advancing LGBTQ ideology — refused to comment on Thomas’ victories to Fox News over the weekend.
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