Q&A with Quaker basketball’s Ashtyn Zeigler


Sophomore Ashtyn Zeigler in action with 22 points, four rebounds, and a steal during a game against William Peace.

Ashtyn Zeigler is a sophomore at Guilford College and  also a passionate member of Guilford’s women’s basketball team. In an interview on Dec. 2, 2022, Zeigler described her experience as a basketball player and student athlete at Guilford. 

Q: What does your background with basketball look like? 

A: I’ve been playing ever since I was five. Since first grade. It’s always been a big part of my life. I’ve always been a big sports person, so I’ve always been active in sports. I’ve loved it. I’ve played soccer, basketball and I raced dirt bikes for a while all the way up until high school and then I strictly focused on basketball. 

Q: Where are you from?

A: I’m from Mooresville, NC. I don’t get to visit a whole lot because of my schedule, but whenever I get a good break I can usually go home and visit. 

Q: How did you end up at Guilford?

A: I transferred to Guilford last year, so the second half of my freshman year. My coach was a big influence for me to come to Guilford. 

Q: What does basketball mean to you?

A: It’s a good escape from everything else. It’s competitive, and I’m a big competitive person, so it helps with that. I just love the sport. It’s just good team bonding, and you get to hang out with your friends ever yday. It’s always just been fun to play. 

Q: Who has been your biggest support in your basketball career? 

A: By far, my family. I’ve been through thick and thin with my sport. Ever since I picked up a basketball, I have always been self-motivated, but they have been there every step of the way to help guide and push me to be the best I can be. 

Q: What is your position in the team? 

A: I’m a combo guard, so I can play point or shooting guard. Some people are more of just one position, but it just depends. 

Q: Who’s your favorite basketball player and why? 

A: Klay Thompson. He is so fun to watch and keeps a positive and humble attitude.

Q: What does your practice schedule look like?

A: Every day. It’s one to two practices a day plus a lift. 

Q: What does your typical day look like? 

A: Some days are busier than others, but usually I have one practice a day plus lift and film, then will go get extra shots up, or another workout on my own. One to two classes a day, will find time for lunch and dinner, and breakfast is usually on the go. Again, pretty busy while in season.

Q: And how does that go with juggling school work and finals coming up?

A: Well, it’s hard, but it’s just a big time management thing. You just have to be able to cope with everything and get your work done early when you can. Professors have been great; they work with us very well. If we’re traveling for games or something then they’ll do their best to get around it. If we have a lab or something we can come in early or do it later. It’s hard, but it’s all about time management. 

Q: What about the game schedule, what does that look like? 

A: Kind of the same. Right now we’re playing like two games a week…sometimes we’ll play three, but that’s a lot. Again, professors are good with it. If we’re on the road, we usually do schoolwork on the road. Most of the time they’re pretty lenient with it, and they’ll give us extra time if we need it. 

Q: Typically, what is the scene after a game and how does it depend on whether you win or lose?

A: We’ll usually just meet in the locker room right after the game and have a talk with the coach. Depending on how the game went, we’ll usually have a day off the next day, but depending on when the next game is, we might not. It’s usually just talking about how the game went and then, no matter the outcome, focusing on the next one. 

Q: How would you describe Guilford’s support of the basketball teams/players? 

A: I think Guilford does a really good job of supporting athletics, at least, they’re trying to. We like to get a lot of fans at the games, and I think they do a good job of advertising games and being like, “This is when a home game is, we need everybody there.” Team-wise, (a) majority of the teams have, like, a “bleed crimson” game. So, it’s the one that we want everybody there for and that’s just another way to get a big crowd there. And athletes support athletes, usually, so it’s fun to watch other sports too. 

Q: When does the season begin and end? 

A: I like to think of it as year-round. So, it really never stops, but school season-wise, we start pre-season usually September or October, and then games start November. We go all the way through February, like towards the end of February. If we make the tournament, then it usually goes down to, like, later February, some of March and then postseason. 

Q: What are you expecting this season? 

A: I’m excited for it. We’re young but we have a lot of potential. Still a little bit of things to clean up. 

Q: Do you plan to keep playing? 

A: I plan on it. That’s the goal. So, I want to play my four years at Guilford and then I want to see if I can play professionally overseas and then possibly go into coaching. 

Q: What do you like to do for fun?

A: I like just playing basketball, hanging out with friends, working out. That’s just a big part of me. I love to lift. I love to just play basketball so that’s my go-to. 

Q: Any fun facts about you? 

A: I used to be a cheerleader. 

The conversation with Zeigler concluded as she shared some words of wisdom about her journey with basketball: “I’ve just enjoyed everything and it’s all kind of falling into place…Everything happens for a reason, really.”