Zeigler's squad has been hit with all sorts of injuries including broken bones and concussions.
Yet South Western is still hanging around in the YAIAA Division I race, thanks one of the league's best one-two punches in big men Jerome Beers and Aram Moffitt.
Wednesday, the Mustangs got bonus-point wins from Beers (195) and Moffitt (220) in a 39-30 victory over visiting Red Lion to remain in second place in the division behind undefeated Spring Grove.
Zeigler never brought up the 12 points his team gave the Lions due to injuries.
"We told them to focus on their individual matches," he said. "We just had to dig a little bit deeper. Every time they step on the mat, we want to see improvement."
The forfeits came early in the match against Red Lion, sandwiched around a pin by Kyle Sprenkle, as the Lions built an 18-0 lead.
South Western's slow climb back into the match started at 138 where Brandon Lookenbill registered a fall over Cody Hohn with 38 seconds remaining in the second period.
But it was a last-second pin in the 160-pound match that had momentum wearing leaning toward South Western.
Tyler Cornbower of South Western and Patrick Kluyber of Red Lion were in a 4-4 battle with under a minute left when Cornbower took Kluyber down to his back. Kluyber fought hard but eventually Cornbower lifted Kluyber's head and recorded the fall with just three seconds left in the bout.
The South Western middleweight recently returned from a four-week absence from the lineup due to a concussion.
The most anticipated match of the night took place three bouts later when the Lions' Korey Eberly and South Western's Jerome Beers took to the mat for the 195-pound bout.
But Beers took the drama out of it.
The senior scored eight points in the second period, including a three-point nearfall, on his way to a dominating 12-4 major decision.
"We changed our strategy at the last minute," Zeigler said. "We figured, let's go heads up with (Eberly). A lot of people wanted to see that match. Jerome wanted that match."
Red Lion coach Brad Keeney felt falling behind early doomed Eberly against the physical Beers.
"Korey just wasn't on his game," he said. "We have all the confidence in him to bump him up (from 182). He's won a lot of matches this year. He just isn't used to (wrestling from behind)."Moffitt followed that big win with a second-period fall over Red Lion freshman Sam Lowe to give South Western its first lead of the night.
Despite the loss, Keeney is beginning to see growth in his young squad, which featured four freshmen and two sophomores Wednesday.
"At the beginning of the year, there were a lot of nerves. I'd see one team in the practice room and another one in matches," he said. "They are slowly understanding the mistakes you can't make at this level."
Red Lion got a pin from Tyler Schell (182) plus decisions from Austin Holloway (152) and Brooks Arnold (285).
at South Western
SOUTH WESTERN 39, RED LION 30
120 -- Cody Stern, RL, won by forfeit; 126 -- Kyle Sprenkle, RL, pinned Aaron Doll, 5:19; 132 -- Ryan Schaeberle, RL, won by forfeit; 138 -- Brandon Lookenbill, SW, pinned Cody Hohn, 3:22; 145 -- Bobby Wildasin, SW, dec. Nick Shiffler, 7-1; 152 -- Austin Holloway, RL, dec. Colton Rebert, 4-2; 160 -- Tyler Cornbower, SW, pinned Patrick Kluyber, 5:57; 170 -- Brady Shultz, SW, dec. Rodney Eid, 4-2; 182 -- Tyler Schell, RL, pinned A.J. Jones, 2:50; 195 -- Jerome Beers, SW, major dec. Korey Eberly, 12-4; 220 -- Aram Moffitt, SW, pinned Sam Lowe, 2:18; 285 -- Brooks Arnold, RL, dec. Devin Ackerman, 3-2; 106 -- Logan Feeser, SW, tech. fall over Jesse Stermer, 4:00 (16-0); 113 -- Cole Sterret, SW, won by forfeit.