Related Biography: Volleyball Player Kent Steffes
Kiraly's partner for more than half of his career wins was Kent Steffes, who paired with Kiraly in 1996 to win gold in the inaugural beach volleyball competition of the Olympic Games. Like Kiraly, Steffes is a graduate of UCLA, having transferred there after spending his freshman year at Stanford. He received his bachelor's degree in economics from UCLA in 1993.
Steffes was born in Pacific Palisades, California, on June 23, 1968. He played volleyball at Palisades High School and in 1986 was named the National High School Player of the Year. While enrolled at Stanford for his freshman year, Steffes was rated the top amateur player in the United States. After one year at Stanford, he transferred to UCLA on a scholarship but opted out of the scholarship after being red-shirted. He joined the Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP) tour full time in 1988 and was named the Association's Up and Coming Player of the Year. The following year, he was named the AVP's Rookie of the Year. At the age of 24, he was ranked the number one player in the AVP, the youngest player ever to win this honor. Between volleyball tournaments, Steffes continued to pursue his studies at UCLA, finally graduating in 1993.
Steffes is the only AVP player to win with three different partners in the same year, and in 1991 he won two Jose Cuervo Gold Crown Series events with different partners, another first in the AVP. In 1995 Steffes appeared with Kiraly in an episode of the popular TV series Baywatch.
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