Second female Penn swimmer steps forward, describes teammates in tears

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Even after a Wednesday team meeting where a source says Penn administration “strongly advised” its swimmers to avoid talking to the media about the situation surrounding transgender Penn swimmer Lia Thomas, a second female Penn swimmer has stepped forward to speak out via an exclusive interview with OutKick.

The second female Penn swimmer to speak out, who was granted anonymity due to what is viewed as threats from the university, activists, and the political climate, wants people to know that Penn swimmers are “angry” over the lack of fairness in the sport as Lia Thomas destroys the record books and brings fellow teammates to tears.

Lia Thomas notched a winning time of 4:34.06. 
(Penn Athletics)

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

After just five meets and the Akron Invitational, Thomas has not just destroyed opponents. The Penn freestyle records are being rewritten by a swimmer who was second-team All-Ivy league in 2018-19 — as a male.

Akron was an absolute beatdown by Thomas, but it wasn’t without disgust from fans who were in the building watching meet, pool, and school records drop one after the other.

“Usually everyone claps, everyone is yelling and cheering when someone wins a race. Lia touched the wall and it was just silent in there,” OutKick’s source said during a phone interview.

“When [Penn swimmer] Anna [Kalandadze] finished second, the crowd erupted in applause.”

Friday, Thomas set a new 500 freestyle Ivy League record. Saturday saw Thomas touch the wall in the 200 freestyle, which is now the nation’s fastest time in the event. And then there was the 1650 that left fans in disgust.

OutKick’s source said that after the 200 freestyle, Thomas could be overheard bragging.

“That was so easy, I was cruising,” Lia Thomas allegedly said.

According to OutKick’s source, Thomas was unhappy with her time after the 500 race, but while standing in front of teammates, made sure to mention, “At least I’m still No. 1 in the country.”

“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,” OutKick’s source 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.”

Thomas’ current best times racing for the women’s team:

200 free: 1:41.93

500 free: 4:34:06

1650 free: 15:59.71

Thomas’ best times racing as a male the first three years at Penn:

200 Free … 1:39.31

500 Free … 4:18.72

1,650 Free … 14:54.76

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

After just five meets and the Akron Invitational, Thomas has not just destroyed opponents. The Penn freestyle records are being rewritten by a swimmer who was second-team All-Ivy league in 2018-19 — as a male.

Akron was an absolute beatdown by Thomas, but it wasn’t without disgust from fans who were in the building watching meet, pool, and school records drop one after the other.

“Usually everyone claps, everyone is yelling and cheering when someone wins a race. Lia touched the wall and it was just silent in there,” OutKick’s source said during a phone interview.

“When [Penn swimmer] Anna [Kalandadze] finished second, the crowd erupted in applause.”

Friday, Thomas set a new 500 freestyle Ivy League record. Saturday saw Thomas touch the wall in the 200 freestyle, which is now the nation’s fastest time in the event. And then there was the 1650 that left fans in disgust.

OutKick’s source said that after the 200 freestyle, Thomas could be overheard bragging.

“That was so easy, I was cruising,” Lia Thomas allegedly said.

According to OutKick’s source, Thomas was unhappy with her time after the 500 race, but while standing in front of teammates, made sure to mention, “At least I’m still No. 1 in the country.”

“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,” OutKick’s source 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.”

Thomas’ current best times racing for the women’s team:

200 free: 1:41.93

500 free: 4:34:06

1650 free: 15:59.71

Thomas’ best times racing as a male the first three years at Penn:

200 Free … 1:39.31

500 Free … 4:18.72

1,650 Free … 14:54.76

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