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College Athletes ‘Angry’ Over Trans Teammate’s ‘Unfair’ Success



A transgender athlete on the University of Pennsylvania’s women’s swimming team has some teammates calling foul.

Lia Thomas, a 22-year-old trans woman, recently broke two women’s swimming records and automatically qualified for the NCAA National Championships in Atlanta.

Thomas previously spent three years competing on Penn’s men’s swimming team in NCAA Division I competition.

Some members of the women’s team are upset over Thomas’ success. In a recent 1650 freestyle final, Penn’s Anna Kalandadze finished second — 38 seconds behind Thomas.

“Pretty much everyone individually has spoken to our coaches about not liking this. Our coach [Mike Schnur] just really likes winning. He’s like most coaches. I think secretly, everyone just knows it’s the wrong thing to do,” a team member said. “When the whole team is together, we have to be like, ‘Oh my gosh, go Lia. That’s great. You’re amazing.’ It’s very fake.”

A second team member spoke out under the condition of anonymity due to threats from the school and activists.


“They feel so discouraged because no matter how much work they put in it, they’re going to lose,” she said. “Usually, they can get behind the blocks and know they out-trained all their competitors, and they’re going to win and give it all they’ve got.”

“Now, they’re having to go behind the blocks knowing no matter what, they do not have the chance to win,” the swimmer continued. “I think that it’s really getting to everyone.”

The teammate also said that Thomas has bragged about her success, allegedly saying, “That was so easy. I was cruising.”

“Well, obviously, she’s No. 1 in the country because she’s at a clear physical advantage after having gone through male puberty and getting to train with testosterone for years,” the swimmer said. “Of course you’re No. 1 in the country when you’re beating a bunch of females. That’s not something to brag about.”


Penn’s female swimmers ‘angry’ over transgender teammate’s ‘unfair’ success