Roughly 24 hours after announcing the resignation of Mallory Houchin as an assistant coach, NC State has announced Paulina Ziolek as their new assistant swimming & diving coach.
According to a press release, Ziolek will “help with NC State’s day-to-day activities and will have a hand in coaching everyone on the team. She will also take the lead in recruiting for the Wolfpack women.”
Ziolek comes after spending a season at Penn State, where she worked primarily with distance and IM swimmers, including 400m IM U.S. National Champion and 1650y free NCAA runner-up Ally McHugh. Both of Penn State’s distance coaches have left the program this season, with Erik Posegay taking a job at Wisconsin.
Prior to Penn State, Ziolek spent 2 years as a volunteer assistant with Texas, where she also worked mostly with the distance group, and as an assistant coach for Texas Longhorn Aquatics, working with elite age groupers.
After NC State’s prior primary distance coach, Gary Taylor, left to take over as head coach at Auburn, the Wolfpack have added now two new faces this summer who are best-known for their work with distance swimmers. Besides Ziolek, the program hired former UVA head coach and South Carolina assistant coach Mark Bernardino as its new associate head coach.
Now, after NC State found its 3rd new full-time coach in the last year, Penn State will be looking for their 3rd of the summer, after hiring a new diving coach Jeff DiNicola and new swimming assistant Josh Graham in August.
A native of Londonderry, N.H., Ziolek swam at Tufts University from 2008 to 2012. She garnered all-conference honors during her senior year and was named CSCAA Scholar All-America Team Honorable Mention that same year. She owns the school record in the 200-yard freestyle relay, and her 50-yard breaststroke time ranks No. 10 overall in her alma mater’s history. Ziolek graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in international relations and was a five-time Dean’s List honoree.
The NC State men have won the last 4 ACC titles in swimming and placed 4th at NCAAs in each of the last 3 seasons. The NC State women were ACC champions in 2017, and had back-to-back NCAA top 10 finishes in 2016 and 2017 until a run of injuries last year left them 3rd in the conference and 18th in the country.
NC State Athletics contributed to this report.