Parkway North swim and dive compete in state, Huelsmann sets school record


Freshman Tanner Huelsmann swims the 100 meter fly at state where he got his personal best. His brother senior Riley Huelsmann beat the school’s 30 year record for the 100 meter breaststroke the same day.

Benjie Thimangu and Alex Tycksen

Parkway North’s swim and dive team appeared at the Missouri state competition on Nov. 11 and 12 where senior Riley Huelsmann broke the Parkway North record for the 100 meter breaststroke, which has stood for 30 years, with a time of 1:01.51.
“I was more shocked than anything else. I knew that he had the ability to do it, and I knew that we could get it done,” said coach Bart Prosser. “I actually had the wrong time down on my sheet, so when he broke it, he knew that he broke it, and I had to double check to make sure that he actually broke it.”
“I was really happy, and I worked hard for it,” Riley Huelsmann said. “It was just a great way to end my high school career. All of my teammates were happy. It was a moment all of us shared.”
Riley Huelsmann’s impressive performance for the 100 meter breaststroke wasn’t the only strong finish for North. Freshman Tanner Huelsmann’s 100 meter fly was a personal best, as was Riley Huelsmann’s 500 meter freestyle. Junior Patrick McCollum qualified for finals in the 50 and 100 meter freestyle and placed 15th and 10th respectively. Freshman Georgiy Khalilov placed 18th in diving.
The championship was won by Parkway Central, who finished the tournament with a score of 290 points accumulated through wins in numerous events over the two day competition. This was the first state championship for Central in 44 years. Chaminade took a close second place with 234 points, and Parkway West defeated Pembroke Hill by a one point margin to secure third place.
For the tournament, the entire team dyed their hair purple, and coach Bart Prosser wore a pair of vibrant purple pants, which he says are a tradition for him.
“For swimming, a lot of times it’s too hot in the pool. So, I bought the purple shorts first. And then I found these real cool looking pants on sale, and that’s where the pants came from,” said Prosser. “So it’s kind of been a tradition for me to wear something unique for those years.”
With team captain Riley Huelsmann, who is the only senior on the team this year, graduating in 2023, the PNH swim team will have big shoes to fill but has a solid returning crew.
“Being the only senior is a very different experience, but I’m kind of used to it, so a lot of responsibility falls on me,” Riley Huelsmann said.
Riley Huelsmann plans to continue swimming after high school. His goal is to swim for Stevens Institute of Technology.
“I think that we’ve got a good foundation of athletes to come back over the next couple of years,” Prosser said. “With [Alex] and Patrick, and then we have those nine freshmen. I think that things are looking good. We can get another group of freshmen next year. That’s the big thing”.
The future of the program is certainly in secure hands, as the team continues to strive to improve upon their already impressive season going into the 2023 year.