Yana Wilson (USGA)
The round of 16 is well underway at Bel-Air Country Club, and through just five holes 2022 U.S. Junior Girls' champ Yana Wilson of Nevada is 3-up on LSU standout Latanna Stone from Florida. Also looking strong is Rachel Heck, the Stanford standout just returning from injury. She was 4-up after just six holes against Nikki Oh of Torrance, Calif.
2022 ANWA champ Anna Davis from California is among the final 16, as is incoming USC freshman Bailey Shoemaker.
Coverage of the round-of-16 starts on Golf Channel at 6:00 pm Eastern time. We will post a full recap later today.
ROUND ONE COVERAGE
Four years after making her U.S. Women’s Amateur
debut at age 11, Gianna Clemente
, 15, of Estero, Fla., is back with bigger expectations and significantly more attention.
Entering the week as one of the hottest players in the field (she won the PGA Junior Championship last week), Clemente already has one USGA title under her belt this season, teaming up with Avery Zweig
to win the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball in May at The Home Course in Dupont, Wash.
She kept the momentum going on Wednesday, defeating 2021 U.S. Women’s Amateur champion Jensen Castle
, 4 and 3, in a marquee match that was closer than the score showed. The two USGA champions didn’t tie a hole until the par-4 seventh, which both players birdied.
Through holes 1-6, Castle took three separate 1-up leads, and in each case, Clemente immediately followed with a win to tie the match.
Things would change after the turn, though, as Clemente, the No. 3 seed, won four straight holes starting at No. 11, a stretch that included two birdies. She will now face Anne Chen
, of Sugar Land, Texas, in the Round of 32 on Thursday morning.
“I've changed as a player and as a person so much [since 2019],” said Clemente. “Definitely a lot better than I was when I was 11. I think the amount of experience I've gained since then has been really big and I've played so many USGA events since then. I've done so much and played so many professional events and amateur events that, yeah, I feels like a completely different person for sure.”
On the other side of the bracket, Briana Chacon made sure there was no mention of a medalist curse, despite the fact that six of the last nine No. 1 seeds have gone down to their No. 64 seeded opponents.
Chacon, who is set to begin her fifth year at the University of Oregon in a few weeks, jumped out to a quick 1-up lead over Olivia Duan, 17, of Cupertino, Calif., after an eagle on the first hole.
Duan, who advanced out of a two-hole playoff to grab the final spot in the match play bracket earlier Wednesday morning, showed some fight, tying the match on the fifth hole before winning holes 6 and 8 to take a 2-up advantage.
Chacon would claw her way back, tying the match on the 14th hole, then winning on the first extra hole, the 19th of the match, with a birdie.
“On the back nine, I was doing some catch-up work for sure,” said Chacon. “Had a few birdies go in luckily, and had some really good approach shots and just made some more clutch putts on the back nine.”
Other notables to advance out of the Round of 64 include two-time USA Curtis Cup team members Rachel Heck, of Stanford, and Rachel Kuehn, of Wake Forest, as well as 2022 U.S. Girls’ Junior champion Yana Wilson, of Henderson, Nev.
ABOUT THE U.S. Women's Amateur
The U.S. Women's Amateur, the third
the USGA championships, was first played
at Meadowbrook Club in Hempstead, N.Y.
event is open to any female amateur who
USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 5.4.
Women's Amateur is one of 14 national
championships conducted annually by the
10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
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