CARMEL, Ind. (June 19, 2019) – Brooke Biermann, Gabriella Gilrowski, Jocelyn Bruch and Nathaly Munnicha advanced Wednesday to the Women’s Western Junior semifinals at Woodland Country Club.
The semifinal and final rounds of match play will be held Thursday. Biermann, of Wildwood, Missouri, will play Gilrowski, of Westfield, Indiana, in the first semifinal match at 7:30 a.m. Munnicha, of Columbus, Indiana, will play Jocelyn Bruch, of Carmel, Indiana, at 7:38 a.m.
Biermann never trailed in either of her matches on Wednesday. The No. 1 seed and medalist continued her strong play in the single-elimination bracket, finishing each match on the 16th hole. In her second match, Biermann was 4 up through 11 holes.
“I had a hiccup on hole 12 with a bogey,” Biermann said. “When I made the 7-footer on 14 after leaving my first putt way short, that was a big confidence booster.”
The rising junior bogeyed the 15th hole. “You can’t get frantic when things aren’t going your way,” she said. “I told my caddie … on the 16th tee, ‘We need to make birdie.’ ”
She made birdie to close out the match, 3 & 2.
Gilrowski, the No. 12 seed, upset the Nos. 5- and 4-seeded players on Wednesday. She found herself 2 down through seven holes in her afternoon match against Molly Bebelaar of Louisville.
“I kept my head in the game,” Gilrowski said. “Golf is such a fickle sport. I never took myself out of it.”
The rising senior brought the match to all square on the ninth hole.
“I love holes 10, 11 and 14,” Gilrowski said. “I was able to stick my wedges inside 10 feet to put myself in birdie range.”
Gilrowski birdied 10, 14 and 15, winning the match 3 & 2.
Bruch, the no. 7 seed, is a Purdue University-commit. She took control early in her afternoon match.
“My caddie made the difference for me in the second round of match play,” Bruch said. “I did not have a caddie in the morning match. He kept me in a better mood.”
The rising senior at Westfield High School was 3 up through nine holes. She went on to win holes 11, 12 and 13 to win 6 & 5.
Looking ahead to Thursday’s semifinals, the 17-year-old Bruch said, “I obviously want to get to the final match. I really just want to have fun out there.”
Munnicha, the No. 6 seed, surprised herself on Wednesday. Her only match play experience was six years ago.
“I kept my focus on myself and my opponent,” the 16-year-old said. “I took it hole by hole, staying mentally positive.
“On 15, my opponent knocked it close. I knew I had to hit it closer. I chipped it in.”
Looking forward to Thursday, Munnicha said, “I am going to go out and have a good time. I’ll play my best. I’m just so proud to be here.”
The Women’s Western Junior Championship is a testing ground for the stars of the future. Past Champions include Candie Kung (1998), Christie Kerr (1994), Grace Park (1993), and Nancy Lopez (1972, 1973, 1974).