TALLAHASSEE, Florida, February 7. JOE Ziegler, a senior from Leon High in Tallahassee, has become the first swimmer from the Big Bend/Panhandle Areas to earn a Pinch A Penny Swimmer of the Year Award in the program's eight-year history. The Swimming World five-star recruit, who signed with Alabama, will receive his Florida Male Swimmer of the Year Award in a ceremony at the school today.
Ziegler, who also will be honored as a three-time Pinch A Penny All-State Team member, earned his award by winning two events (the 200 freestyle and 100 backstroke) at November's 2A FHSAA Florida Finals with the fastest times in the state in all classifications. His times earned him All-American status in both events.
Ziegler is coached by Julie Quinn at Leon and Terry Maul at Tallahassee Aquatics. He is a member of the United States National Junior Team and recently competed at the 2008 Victorian Championships in Melbourne, Australia where he won a gold medal as part of the 800-meter freestyle relay. He has set 30-plus ATAC team records and competed in Kihei, Hawaii in the United States Junior Pan Pacific Championships.
The Tallahassee Democrat 2007 All Big Bend Swimmer of the Year, Ziegler won seven Florida State titles. He was named Leon's MVP four years in a row and holds seven school records.
Pinch A Penny Pool, Patio & Spa, the world's largest franchised retail pool, patio and spa company, has presented Florida Swimmer of the Year Awards since 2000. The Pinch A Penny Female Swimmer of the Year, who will succeed three-time winner Chelsea Nauta of Tampa Prep, will be announced in March.