“Andraya Yearwood hears the comments, usually from adults and usually not to her face.
She shouldn’t be running, they say, not against girls.
Yearwood, a 17-year-old junior at Cromwell High School, is one of two transgender high school sprinters in Connecticut, transitioning to female.
She recently finished second in the 55-meter dash at the state open indoor track championships. The winner, Terry Miller of Bloomfield High, is also transgender and set a girls state indoor record of 6.95 seconds. Yearwood finished in 7.01 seconds and the third-place competitor, who is not transgender, finished in 7.23 seconds.
Miller and Yearwood also topped the 100-meter state outdoor championships last year, and Miller won the 300 indoors this season.
Critics say their gender identity amounts to an unfair advantage, expressing a familiar argument in a complex debate for transgender athletes as they break barriers across sports around the world from high school to the pros.
“I have learned a lot about myself and about other people through this transition. I always try to focus most on all of the positive encouragement that I have received from family, friends, and supporters,” Yearwood said. “I use the negativity to fuel myself to run faster.”
READ MORE: www.foxnews.com/sports/transgender-high-school-athletes-spark-controversy-debate-in-connecticut