Harvard vs Penn (Women’s Dual Meet)
- Saturday, January 22, 2022
- Blodgett Pool, Boston, MA
- SCY (25 Yards)
- Harvard – 187
- Penn – 113
Harvard hosted Penn for a women’s dual meet on Saturday, posting a dominant 187-113 win over their conference rival. The Crimson won both relays as well as 9 of 14 individual events to establish their 74-point margin of victory.
Lia Thomas picked up two of Penn’s wins on the day, taking the 100 and 200 freestyle. Racing the 200 first, Thomas swam a 1:47.08 to touch first after battling Harvard’s Felicia Pasadyn through the first half of the race. Pasadyn led Thomas by a hair at the 100 mark, flipping in 53.11 to Thomas’ 53.15. Thomas made her move on the 3rd 50, however, splitting 26.91 to Pasadyn’s 27.67. Pasadyn ultimately finished in 1:48.44, just one second off her lifetime best of 1:47.33. Thomas went on to win the 100 free in 50.55, using a 25.54 split on the 2nd 50 to take the lead.
Thomas is a transgender swimmer, who spent her first 3 seasons at Penn on the men’s team. After a record-breaking first semester on the women’s team this fall, Thomas has often been the center of the controversial debate over the rules surrounding transgender athletes. Last week, the NCAA Board voted to support a sport-by-sport approach to transgender athlete inclusion, wherein determining rules for testosterone thresholds will be left up to national and international governing bodies for each sport. The NCAA announced these new policies would be in effect for the 2022 championships.
Per the new NCAA guidelines, when governing bodies don’t establish a threshold for testosterone levels (which is currently the case), the November 2021 International Olympic Committee policy becomes the default. However, the November IOC policy didn’t include a testosterone threshold, and instead shifted the onus of creating such thresholds onto the national governing bodies. So in effect, there isn’t a clear policy for transgender athletes in swimming, and there won’t be, until USA Swimming or FINA announces a new policy.
Pasadyn would go on to claim victory in the 400 IM, clocking a 4:14.92 to win by 10 seconds. She used her freestyle prowess to propel her home, splitting a quick 58.11 on the final 100 of the race.
Harvard freshman Mandy Brenner split 21.89 on 2nd leg of the Harvard ‘A’ 200 free relay according to the results. It appears the time isn’t legitimate, however, as fellow first-year Molly Hamlin led the relay off in 25.48, despite splitting 25.17 on the first 50 of the individual 100 free earlier in the meet. Moreover, Brenner split 22.99 on the anchor leg of the 200 medley relay, and won the individual 50 free in 23.66. Harvards 200 free relay won in 1:34.48.
Harvard was absolutely dominant on the diving boards, claiming the top 6 finishes in 1-meter, and the top 7 divers in 3-meter.