No. 1 O'Gorman beats No. 2 Roosevelt for AA crown
Sioux Falls O’Gorman head volleyball coach Julie Kolbeck says this year was a dream.
“This is one season I do not want to end,” she said after her team won the Class AA state championship Saturday. “These kids will give you everything that they’ve got and they won’t quit. You look around and you know this is something special.”
The top-seeded Knights swept No. 2 Sioux Falls Roosevelt 25-22, 25-19, 25-17 to win their first title since 2002.
O’Gorman (25-1) controlled the net most of the night, shutting down Roosevelt standout hitters Tagyn Larson and Maggie DeJong, a Louisville University signee.
“O’Gorman had a fantastic day and the credit goes to them,” Roosevelt head coach Holly Lynch said. “We were out of system a lot of the match and weren’t able to capitalize on our side of the net.”
Larson finished the night with 13 kills and DeJong had 16 of the team’s 38 total kills.
The Knights took advantage of strong serving and pounded 53 kills of their own.
“We had really aggressive serving and got ahead of the game,” Kolbeck said.
O’Gorman was led by junior Taryn Kloth, who recorded a match-high 20 kills and added a team-best 10 digs and two blocks for a double-double. Lauren Witte and Peyton Bjorkman were also a part of the aggressive offense. Witte finished with 14 kills and Bjorkman tallied 10.
The Rough Riders (27-9) looked strong coming out of the gate as they jumped in front to a 9-4 lead with the help of DeJong. But with consistency, the Knights won seven consecutive points to take the lead, one they wouldn’t relinquish. After fighting off set point, O’Gorman got a kill from Witte to claim the opening set.
The momentum carried over to the second set as the Knights gained an early lead and cruised to a 25-19 win, coming within one set of the title.
The Rough Riders continued to struggle putting any offense together early in the third as O’Gorman built a six-point lead. Yet, Roosevelt battled to tie the set at 12.
With a sweep in sight, Kloth took control of the set. The 6-foot-3 outside hitter recorded at least seven kills through the final 17 points.
Dalee Stene finished with a match-high 49 assists for the Knights. Roosevelt’s Erinn Temple recorded a team-best 31 assists.
NOTES: Members of the all-tournament team are Rapid City Central’s Emily Herrera; Watertown’s Macy Denzer; Sioux Falls Washington’s Ellie Benson and Hannah Niemann; Huron’s Kelly McCarty; Aberdeen Central’s Brianna Kusler and Maddie Goetz; Sioux Falls O’Gorman’s Taryn Kloth, Lauren Witte and Dalee Stene and Sioux Falls Roosevelt’s Maggie DeJong and Erinn Temple. … There were 2,000 people in attendance during the final day of the Class AA state tournament. There were 1,550 people at the Corn Palace Thursday and 1,750 at Friday’s sessions. The capacity for the event is 2,800.