A University of Pennsylvania swimmer who competed as a male for three years now dominates the female category after identifying himself as a female.
Will Thomas competed as a man for the University of Pennsylvania as Freshman, Sophomore and Junior, securing a few wins and places in tournaments. However, after taking a year off to make the transition, Thomas returned to the U Penn team as a swimmer named Lia and racked up many more tops than before.
According to Swim Swam, Thomas walked in and “beat the number one 200 free time and the second fastest 500 free time in the country on Saturday, breaking Penn program records in both events.” The site added that Thomas “swept” the individual free events and helped win first place in the 400 free relay.
“Thomas started the day with a time of 1: 43.47 (24.6 / 26.2 / 26.4 / 26.1) to win the 200 freestyle,” continued Swim Swam. “Just half a second away from the NCAA A Cup, this is the second fastest women’s free time in the country so far this season, and he would have scored in the NCAA Championships A final. 2021. “
The site pointed out that Thomas beat his teammate by 6.1 seconds to win the 100 freestyle. Thomas then won the 500 freestyle by 12.9 seconds before anchoring U. Penn’s 400 freestyle relay and winning the event by 2.4 seconds over Princeton.
In November, Thomas also captured two gold medals in the 200 freestyle and the 100 freestyle “with margins of 5.4 seconds and 1.3 seconds.”
Swim Swam also noted Thomas’s other results this season, including three first places and a second place and a record ranking for Penn’s women’s team.
Thomas said Penn today that there was talk of continuing to swim after the transition. “The process of becoming trans and continuing to swim was very uncertain and unknown in an area that is generally very solid,” Thomas said.
But the question was quickly answered. Thomas added, “Being trans hasn’t affected my ability to play this sport, and being able to continue is very rewarding.”
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