Male Athlete of the Year: Ziegler leads 4 sports

Ziegler+was+able+to+compete+in+the+winter+indoor+track+season%2C+even+though+he+was+still+battling+through+concussion-like+symptoms.+He+still+qualified+for+WPIALs+in+the+800+meter+event.
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Male Athlete of the Year: Ziegler leads 4 sports

Ziegler was able to compete in the winter indoor track season, even though he was still battling through concussion-like symptoms. He still qualified for WPIALs in the 800 meter event.

Ziegler was able to compete in the winter indoor track season, even though he was still battling through concussion-like symptoms. He still qualified for WPIALs in the 800 meter event.

Natalie Zgurich

Ziegler was able to compete in the winter indoor track season, even though he was still battling through concussion-like symptoms. He still qualified for WPIALs in the 800 meter event.

Natalie Zgurich

Natalie Zgurich

Ziegler was able to compete in the winter indoor track season, even though he was still battling through concussion-like symptoms. He still qualified for WPIALs in the 800 meter event.

Johnny Staley and Connor Reiche

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College coaches frequently seek out multi-sport athletes, but few expect an athlete to participate in more than one sport in a single season.

Purbalite Male Athlete of the Year John Ziegler did exactly that this year, playing soccer and running cross country during the fall season. Additionally, he has emerged as a true leader, serving as captain on the cross country, soccer, indoor track and track teams.

“As a leader, I try to take my past experiences and use them in helping to guide all of my younger teammates,” Ziegler, a senior, said.
Senior soccer player Mitchell Kress said Ziegler was one of the most important leaders on the soccer team.

“John really helped to motivate the team through his words and his actions, and he played hard every game, not matter how tired he was,” Kress said

Senior track teammate Bailey O’Malley agreed with Kress.

“I’ve never met someone with more determination,” O’Malley said. “He just works hard all of the time, and it inspires everyone else on the team.”

The fall was particularly tough splitting time between cross country and soccer, and many people said I couldn’t do it.”

— John Ziegler

Ziegler went through some early struggles during his senior year grind, with schedule conflicts between soccer and cross country in the fall season.

“The fall was particularly tough splitting time between cross country and soccer, and many people said I couldn’t do it,” Ziegler said. “At that point it became my mission do get it done.”

Ziegler struggled through multiple injuries during the fall season, including Achilles tendinitis, calf fatigue, a concussion and knee troubles. Even with these injuries, he only missed one soccer game and two cross country races.

“It was a physical grind getting through the fall, but the mentality I had of finishing the season helped me to finish off strong,” Ziegler said.

Ziegler was able to compete in the winter indoor track season, even though he was still battling through concussion-like symptoms. He still qualified for WPIALs in the 800 meter event.

“The fatigue from the fall season carried over to the winter, which hurt my chances for qualifying for states, but I was still able to compete,” Ziegler said.

This spring, Ziegler has competed in the outdoor track season, with his events being the 800 meter dash, the 4×800 meter relay, and the 4×400 meter relay.

Ziegler has been able to compete in four sports in one school year, which is an extremely rare feat.

“John’s ability to do four sports in a single year shows his dedication and hard work in all of the sports he competes in,” O’Malley said

Ziegler said he felt humbled by being chosen as the Purbalite Male Athlete of the Year.

“I was surprised to win this award over the great athletes here at Baldwin,” Ziegler said. “It makes me realize how much work I put in, and how much my hard work all year has paid off.”