Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss take silver at BPT Elite 16 Brasilia (FIVB)
Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss take Silver at Elite 16 Brasilia (FIVB).

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 8, 2024) – The U.S. began May by earning five medals in two separate events this past weekend. There is one beach event with two U.S. teams on tap for this week, and we check in on the Olympic race for the U.S. men with four points-scoring tournaments to go before Paris.

Elite 16 Brasilia

World No. 2-ranked Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss claimed silver at the third Elite 16 event of the year.

The top-ranked U.S. women found their groove from 2023 after winning pool and advancing directly to the quarterfinals, where they won two knockout matches vs. Xua/Xia (CHN), 2-0 (21-13, 21-13) in the quarterfinals and vs. Esme/Zoe (SUI) 2-1 (10-21, 21-19, 15-12) in the semis.

They fell to world No. 1 Ana Patricia/Duda (BRA) in the final 2-0 (21-17, 21-14), but Kloth/Nuss captured their first medal since the 2023 BPT Finals.

Despite battling an illness, Kelly Cheng and partner Sara Hughes (World No. 3) finished in the top five, losing to the eventual tournament winners Ana Patricia/Duda in the quarterfinals.

On the men’s side, Miles Partain/Andy Benesh and Miles Evans/Chase Budinger each made a deep run to the quarterfinals, settling for a fifth-place tie to finish the tournament.

NORCECA Varadero Results


The U.S. took home four medals at 2024 NORCECA Varadero (NORCECA)
The U.S. took home four medals at 2024 NORCECA Varadero (NORCECA).

All four teams competing at NORCECA Varadero, Cuba, earned medals.

Savvy Simo/Abby Van Winkle defeated U.S. teammates Hailey Harward/Kylie Deberg in the semifinals 2-0 (21-18, 21-18). This set them up in the final vs. Navas/Gonzales (CUB) where Simo/Van Winkle took gold with a 2-1 win (21-14, 17-21, 15-12).

Harward/Deberg claimed bronze by defeating Drik/Amanda (CUB), 2-1 (21-17, 17-21, 15-13) in the third-place match.

On the men’s side, Avery Drost and Cody Caldwell defeated U.S. teammates Evan Cory and Wyatt Harrison in the semis 2-1 (28-26, 20-22, 15-11) to advance to the final. There they defeated Alayo/Diaz (CUB) 2-0 (21-13, 22-20) to take the top spot of the podium.

Harrison/Cory rallied after the loss in the semis to capture the bronze medal with a 2-0 win (21-17, 21-16) over Torres/Ruvera (PUR) in the third-place match.

NORCECA Juan Dolio

It’s a quick turnaround for Harward/Deberg and Cory/Harrison, as each pair will look to build upon their third-place finishes in Varadero at the next NORCECA event in Juan Dolio, Dominican Republic. The competition runs from May 7-11.

Olympic Rankings

Miles Evans at Elite 16 Brasilia (FIVB)
Miles Evans at Elite 16 Brasilia (FIVB)

The finishes at Elite 16 Brasilia make the race as close as ever for the last U.S. men’s Olympic spot.

Miles Evans/Chase Budinger are provisionally ranked tied for No. 15 and now have 7,760 points on 20 tournaments played. This puts them just 100 points away from Trevor Crabb/Theo Brunner. The latter pair are in sole possession of the No. 14 provisional ranking and have 7,860 points on 19 tournaments played.

All eyes will be on the NORCECA Continental Final in Juan Dolio May 11-15 where Evans/Budinger will hope to score enough points to leapfrog Crabb/Brunner in the provisional rankings.

Partain/Benesh did their part to widen the gap on their hold for the top U.S. men’s position. The pair move up to No. 6 in the provisional Olympic rankings with the latest finish. Partain/Benesh have 8,980 points on 12 tournaments played.

For the women, the numbers change, but the rankings stay virtually status quo for the top two U.S. pairs.

Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss are No. 2 in the provisional Olympic rankings behind only Ana Patricia/Duda (BRA). Nuss/Kloth have 11,360 points on 16 tournaments played.

Kelly Cheng and Sara Hughes are No. 3 in the provisional Olympic rankings with 10,800 points on 15 tournaments played. Hughes/Cheng have the W designation for a quota place obtained for winning the 2023 Beach World Championships.

Current World Rankings – Men

Current World Rankings – Women

Provisional Olympic Ranking – Men 

Provisional Olympic Ranking – Women

How to Qualify for the Olympics


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