Minnesota Golf Association

Texan Zweig and Ohio's Clemente Earn Qualifying Spot to 2021 U.S. Women's Four-Ball

October 6, 2020

By Nick Hunter
  BLAINE, Minn. – Firing a round of 7-under 64 before surviving a playoff against University of Minnesota golfers Emma Carpenter and Grace Curran Tuesday at Victory Links Golf Course, the team of Gianna Clemente and Avery Zweig earned medalist honors, as well as a spot in the 2021 U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship.
From a field of seven teams Tuesday, Clemente and Zweig earned the lone qualifying spot to next year’s national championship, which will be played April 24-28 at Maridoe Golf Club in Carrollton, Texas.
“The [U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball], to me, is the most fun USGA event,” Zweig said. “That was my first USGA exposure and having a partner to help deal with the nerves and pressure and also to enjoy the experience with, is really helpful. I’ve always loved this event and [next year] is in my home town.”
“I had pretty high expectations for myself coming in—I wanted to qualify,” the 12-year-old Clemente said Tuesday. “Playing with [Zweig] is always a great experience and I wanted to come out and have fun.”
Both Clemente and Zweig converted their birdie chances at the second hole before Zweig holed a 35-footer for birdie at the fourth. From a difficult lie in the rough at the par-5 fifth, Clemente hit her approach inside of eight feet and rolled in her birdie chance to move the team to 3-under.
After sinking a pair of birdie chances from over 10 feet at the sixth and eighth holes, Zweig helped the twosome quickly build momentum with an outward nine tally of 5-under 30.
“We were able to get off to a good start, which was helpful because some of the beginning holes are difficult,” she said.
“I felt good about our front nine, I thought we did the best we could and made as many putts as we could,” Clemente added.
Zweig dropped a 12-footer for birdie at the 12th and Clemente countered by sticking her approach inside of five feet at the 14th to get to 7-under for the qualifier before Zweig added the twosome’s final birdie at the par-4 15th.
With a one-stroke lead heading to the 18th hole, Clemente lost her tee shot right of the 18th fairway, leaving Zweig to three-putt from the back edge of the final green to force extra holes with Carpenter and Curran.
“I thought I hit a good approach shot, but it took a huge hit and I was on the back of the green,” Zweig said after her bogey at the final hole Tuesday. “I had a downhill 40-footer and it’s hard to gauge the speed out of the first cut. I had a breaking 20-footer for par and at that point I figured we were probably going to a playoff.”
With a second three-putt bogey in as many holes, Zweig was saved by Clemente who left her birdie chance short, but rolled in a 2-footer for par to earn medalist honors.
Zweig, a 13-year-old from McKinney, Texas, has now qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball in three of her last four seasons. In 2017, Zweig and fellow Texan Malena Barrientos qualified at Windsong Farm before Zweig and partner Cory Lopez earned medalist honors at Chaska Town Course.
Clemente, from Warren, Ohio, qualified for her first U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Tuesday, having qualified for last year's U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship at Old Waverly Golf Club in West Point, Miss.
Carpenter and Curran got off to a fast start Tuesday, both carding birdie at the par-5 second before Carpenter rolled in her birdie look at the fifth. Carpenter took advantage of a birdie chance again at the fifth before dropping her fourth birdie of the front nine at the par-3 eighth to help her and Curran reach 4-under for the round.
Carpenter kept her momentum rolling to the back nine, sinking her birdie putt at the 10th and would sink her sixth birdie of the day, when her putt at the par-4 13th found the bottom of the cup to move to 6-under. Curran stepped up by carding her second birdie of the day at the difficult par-3 17th and the two would go on to finish in a tie for first at 7-under 64.
During the playoff, Carpenter lost her tee shot right of the first fairway, while Curran reached the green in regulation, but watched as her par putt from five feet curled around the cup and wouldn’t drop, tapping in for a bogey and a second-place finish.
Earlier this season, Carpenter and Curran carded a final-round 72 to finish in a tie for second with fellow Gopher teammates Kate Lillie and Grace Kellar at the MGA Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship at Dellwood Country Club.
Carpenter and Curran finished as first alternates, while the twosome of Isabella McCauley and Emma Welch finished as second alternates, shooting 2-under 69.


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