Making a long day even longer, Thursday at the U.S. Women’s Amateur endured a weather delay, but when the fog finally cleared the final eight players emerged at Chambers Bay from the tournament’s only double-session day.
And although 21-year-old Brianna Navarrosa had to be tired when she was finally done, the USC stamdout had a monumental day in securing a spot in Friday’s quarterfinals in University Place, Washington.
In the early wave of play, the San Diego product topped Stanford’s NCAA champion Rachel Heck, then she came out of an intense battle against fourth-seeded Kelsey Bennett from Australia.
The match between Navarrosa and Bennett saw 11 lead changes with neither player having more than a 1-up advantage. Bennett buried a big putt on the 17th hole to extend the match and then dropped an 8-foot birdie putt on 18 to send the match to extra holes.
Navarrosa prevailed, however, when Bennett made bogey on the third extra hole and she managed par.
“It hasn’t sunk in yet,” said Navarrosa. “I play again tomorrow [Friday]. I haven’t made it this far, and I think my game is the best where it’s been in a very long time, so I’m very happy with that.”
Competitors walk down the fairway on the first hole as fog shrouds some of the golf course during the round of 32 at the 2022 U.S. Women’s Amateur at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash. on Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022. (Darren Carroll/USGA)
Others who advanced included Annabel Wilson of Ireland, who beat Julia Misemer and Katie Li.
“I like how I’m striking it. Then I’m rolling the putts in, so I’m confident in my game,” said Wilson. “We play a lot of match play with Golf Ireland, and I think what I’ve learned over the years is match play is all swinging momentum, and you can’t let it get to you. You’ve just got to play your game.”
New Mexico junior Lauren Lehigh, Princeton freshman Catherine Rao, 21-year-old Monet Chun of Canada, 17-year-old Saki Baba of Japan, 16-year-old Leigh Chien of Irvine, California, and 17-year-old Bailey Shoemaker of Dade City, Florida, are the others to reach the quarters, which start at 5:30 p.m. ET (2:30 p.m. local time).
The semifinals will be Saturday and the 36-hole final is set for Sunday.
Friday, Aug. 12, 7-10 p.m. ET, Golf Channel
Saturday, Aug. 13, 3-6 p.m. ET, Golf Channel
Sunday, Aug. 14, 7-10 p.m. ET, Golf Channel