Chuck Tragesser competing at Latrobe Elks Golf Club in the final qualifying round for the WPGA Amateur Championship.

Tragesser earns top spot at final WPGA Amateur qualifier
By Josh Rowntree, Director of Communications  • June 5, 2024

LATROBE — Chuck Tragesser couldn’t have scripted a better start to his round Wednesday. In fact, just about no one could.

Tragesser, a member at Willowbrook Country Club, went birdie-birdie-eagle on the first three holes, shooting a 6-under 66 to secure the top spot at the final WPGA Amateur Championship qualifying round at Latrobe Elks Golf Club.

“I really haven’t been hitting it that well, said Tragesser, a Murrysville native. “I had some errant shots and have been fighting some things in my swing. But I was able to combat that.

“I made a nice putt on number one, hit it close on two and then hit it to two feet for eagle on three. It was nice to make some birdies and get in the red today.”

The middle of Tragesser’s round didn’t go as smooth, however. He had a trio of bogeys — plus a birdie — between the 8th and 13th holes, but responded with three more birdies to close out his round.

“Some of the bad habits started to come back a little bit,” Tragesser said of the swing mishaps he’s battled. “It’s definitely always on your mind. I’ve been struggling lately with it. And I know exactly what’s going on. So that’s comforting when you do know what’s happening. It’s always a work in progress.”

Tragesser benefitted from some familiarity. He grew up about 25 minutes away and played the course regularly while attending Franklin Regional High School and into college.

“I usually get out here about once or twice a year,” he said. “It can definitely be a challenge sometimes, especially the greens. Playing here before and knowing where to miss is probably the biggest part.”

The college rising redshirt sophomore played at Rhode Island last year but has transferred to play at Robert Morris for the upcoming season.

“I’m excited about the coach, Coach (Steve) Shingledecker,” Tragesser said. “And the team. It seems like we have some good guys, good facilities. The schedule is good and it’s close to home. I’m excited to start competing in the fall.”

He edged Louis Bruzda, a member at Sunnehanna Country Club, who shot a 4-under 68. In all- eight players shot under par on the day.

Tragesser and Bruzda, along with 17 others, qualified Wednesday for the 124th WPGA Amateur Championship at Chartiers Country Club on June 17-18.

But finalizing those 19 players — plus the two alternate spots earned — wasn’t easy. Ten players finished at 4-over, the final mark inside of the cut line.

Of those ten, eight participated in a playoff for the final qualifying position and two alternate spots. Cody Trabert secured the final qualifying position, while Sam Napper and Andy Roskosh are the alternates. It took Roskosh eight playoff holes to claim victory.

Two other qualifying rounds were completed over the last month at Green Oaks Country Club and The Country Club of Meadville. Qualifiers at those events will join exempt players at Chartiers, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.

“I’m excited, but I’m definitely going to have to get some rounds out there,” Tragesser said. “I haven’t played out there since the West Penn Boys Championship (in 2017). It’s been a long time. I’m excited to see how that place is playing.”

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For media inquiries, please contact WPGA Director of Communications Josh Rowntree.

About the WPGA
Founded in 1899, the Western Pennsylvania Golf Association is the steward of amateur golf in the region. Started by five Member Clubs, the association now has nearly 200 Member Clubs and nearly 37,000 members. The WPGA conducts 14 individual competitions and 10 team events, and administers the WPGA Scholarship Fund and Western Pennsylvania Golf Hall of Fame.