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South Dakota’s own Taryn Kloth is headed to Paris

The Argus Leader

Taryn Kloth, a Sioux Falls native and an alumni of O’Gorman high school, is headed to Paris to compete in the 2024 Olympic Games. Kloth, along with her Louisiana State University teammate Kristen Nuss, will compete for Team USA in Beach Volleyball.

In a press release from the LSU Athletic Department, Kloth shared her excitement on the upcoming journey for her volleyball career.

“To qualify for the Olympics, the pinnacle of athletic competition is truly surreal. It hits me when I think back to watching and adoring those athletes when I was a little girl. Wearing USA on our jersey, that is such an honor,” said Kloth. “The combination of the flag, red/white/blue, and the national anthem leaves me speechless and with a million goosebumps.”

Kloth grew up in Sioux Falls where she quickly turned heads as a volleyball player, competing in AAU and then in high school for O’Gorman. But, it didn’t start off with a strong love for volleyball.

During an ‘In Play with Craig Matick’ podcast interview in November of ’23, Kloth mentioned how in elementary school she played both basketball and volleyball at the local YMCA.

“I absolutely hated the volleyball portion of it. I was so angry whenever it was the end of basketball and only volleyball,” chuckled Kloth. “I would get so frustrated because I was the kid that couldn't even serve the ball over the net. And then I think it was my sixth-grade year that my best friend tried out for a traveling volleyball team, and I made a deal with my mom that I would go to tryouts if I could have a sleepover.

Her love for the sport of volleyball would then take off from there.

“Probably in the [middle school] years of like seventh, eighth grade,” she said. “I actually stopped playing basketball my freshman year because I was so intrigued by volleyball and I wanted to spend all my time, effort, energy, and everything into just volleyball.”

Kloth’s high school career is still a topic of some discussions in South Dakota.

As a senior, she led the Knights to a state championship, which included personal season totals of 558 kills, 314 digs, and had 90 blocks. For her career, she recorded 1,187 kills. Kloth was also named South Dakota’s Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior.

After high school, Kloth went on to have a four-year career at Creighton, and then a two-year career in beach volleyball at LSU. Kloth and partner Kristen Nuss have been playing together since 2021. In their first year together at LSU, they went 36-0 and were named ‘Pair of the Year’ by the American Volleyball Coaches Association.

The beach volleyball portion of the 2024 Paris Olympic Games will take place from July 27-August 9 at Eiffel Tower Stadium.

2023 and 2024 Career Highlights for Kloth and Nuss

Nate Wek is currently the sports content producer and sports and rec beat reporter for South Dakota Public Broadcasting. He is a graduate of South Dakota State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism Broadcasting and a minor in Leadership. From 2010-2013 Nate was the Director of Gameday Media for the Sioux Falls Storm (Indoor Football League) football team. He also spent 2012 and 2013 as the News and Sports Director of KSDJ Radio in Brookings, SD. Nate, his wife Sarah, and two kids Braxan and Jordy, live in Canton, SD.