Family influence leads to swimming trio


Margaret Uhler

Carson Ziegler, Adam Ziegler and Jack Ziegler

Senior Jack Ziegler positions himself on the starting block, waiting for the signal to send him plunging into the pool with only one thought in mind: break the record.

One stroke after the other, Ziegler nears the end of the last lap and reaches to touch the wall and stop the clock: 21.64 seconds—just .28 milliseconds quicker than the current 50-yard freestyle record.

Meanwhile, brothers and teammates junior Carson Ziegler and freshman Adam Ziegler hold their breath, waiting for the time to be revealed. After a beat of silence, Carson shouts, “Jack broke the record!” His exclamation drowns in uproarious applause.
The Ziegler brothers are members of Free State Boys Swim team, inspired, in part, by their father.

“My dad was a swimmer in high school, so that definitely influenced me and my brothers as well,” Jack said. “He was definitely happy that I became a swimmer.”

While the brothers now practice and compete together, they find their relationship has, if anything, simply become more supportive.

“It is about the same,” Adam said. “We cheer for each other.”

The Ziegler brothers agree supporting each other is more important than winning.

“It’s more about cheering each other on than being rivals,” Jack said.

Come time for a meet, the brothers calm their nerves and only focus on one thing: going as fast as possible. However, once in the water, they find that everything else melts away.

“I just try to go as hard as I can without stopping,” Carson said. “It’s pretty quick once you’re in. There’s not much thinking when you’re in the water.”

Realizing the rarity of their situation, the brothers are taking advantage of their time on the team together while it lasts.

“Not a lot of people probably get to do [be teammates with their brothers],” Jack said. “I’m grateful that I get to experience it.”