UPenn Swimming Star Beaten By Another Transgender Athlete

A University of Pennslyvania swimmer Lia Thomas, a transgender woman, was defeated in her first competition since a record-breaking performance.

During the Ivy League meet featuring UPenn, Dartmouth, and Yale, Iszac Henig, a transitioning male from Yale, beat out Thomas in the women’s 100- and 400-yard freestyle races, according to various reports. Henig also set a record for the women’s 50-yard freestyle.

upennDespite Henig identifying as a male, he is still eligible to compete on the women’s team because she has yet to start testosterone treatment.

The Daily Mail spoke to various parents whose children were part of the UPenn swim meet to get their thoughts. Below is an excerpt from the Daily Mail article.

‘I wasn’t prepared for that. Everything is messed up. I can’t wrap my head around this. The NCAA needs to do something about this. They need to put science into the decision and discussion,’ a UPenn parent, who wanted to remain anonymous, told

Another parent said: ‘A man just crushed the women’s team.’

Henig still competes on the Ivy League school’s women’s team after coming out to coaches and teammates in April 2021, and told the New York Times in July that he was not taking hormones because he still wanted to compete.

‘As a student athlete, coming out as a trans guy put me in a weird position. I could start hormones to align more with myself, or wait, transition socially, and keep competing on a women’s swim team. I decided on the latter,’ he wrote in an opinion piece.

‘I value my contributions to the team and recognize that my boyhood doesn’t hinge on whether there’s more or less testosterone running through my veins. At least, that’s what I’ll try to remember when I put on the women’s swimsuit for the competition and am reminded of a self I no longer feel attached to.’

UPenn’s swim meet on Saturday was the team’s first since last month, when Thomas blew away the competition and shattered two national women’s records at the Zippy International in Akron, Ohio.

Such was her dominance in the 1,650-yard freestyle that second-placed swimmer Anna Kalandadze, a UPenn teammate, finished 38 seconds behind her.

On Saturday, she was cheered to victory as she won the 200-yard freestyle, finishing 1.48.73, with her closest competitor just two seconds behind her. In a less dominant display than in Ohio, Thomas swam slightly behind her closest competitor for most of the race, before pulling ahead at the end in the final heat. In the first heat, she finished about five seconds ahead of her closest competitor.

To read the full story from The Daily Mail, click here