Grace Windfelder, Fifth WPGA Girls' Match Play Champion at Fox Chapel Golf Club

Windfelder rallies to win 5th WPGA Girls’ Match Play
By Josh Rowntree, Director of Communications • July 2, 2024

As Grace Windfelder walked off the 18th green at Fox Chapel, with celebratory arms extended over her head, she had just one, soft word for her mother waiting with a hug.

“Underdog,” said Windfelder, shortly before the two embraced.

“It was a really sweet moment,” she explained afterwards. “This was my first win. I was really happy to share it with her and my dad.”

Windfelder, on paper, wasn’t exactly the underdog of the 5th WPGA Girls’ Match Play Invitational at Fox Chapel Golf Club. But her mindset seemed far from that of what she really was: the tournament’s top seed.

An Oakland Catholic grad committed to Fairfield, Windfelder topped Mya Morgan Tuesday in the event’s championship round, 2 Up.

“Driving the ball,” she said of what she did well. “And course management wise and plotting my way through the course, especially mentally, just not letting anything go and not letting things get away from me and always fighting back.”

And Windfelder needed to fight back. Morgan, a rising junior at Elizabeth Forward High School, had a two-hole lead heading to the 14th hole. But the older of the two players showed veteran poise, winning four of the final five holes.

“She’s a young, really good player,” said Windfelder of Morgan, a WPIAL Class 3A champion this past fall. “It was super fun. It was great competing with her and playing with her. She was a strong opponent.

“It got late in the match, but I kept reminding myself that I can come back. It’s match play and anything can happen. I had a handful of holes left and I could really put my foot on it, stand up and do well… It was fun, but hard, and I knew I could get it.”

Windfelder, as the top seed, received a first-round bye in Monday’s opening round. She defeated Clara Koteski, 2 Up, in the quarterfinals, and followed that Tuesday morning with a 4&3 triumph over Olivia DeGori.

In all, she conquered three rounds of match play golf — and her opponents — in under 30 hours. She let out a noticeable sigh of relief before the shaking hands with Morgan and celebrating.

“I’m really happy about it,” she said. “Coming down 18, I had a little bit of nerves. But my caddy, Matt, reminded me to breathe deep breaths and enjoy the moment. I’m very happy I got to enjoy it with my family here.”

Morgan impressed with her power off the tee and the balance of a more experienced player throughout the match. She topped Norah Urrea Monday and Sophia Severns in Tuesday morning’s other semifinal.

In all, she and Windfelder were part of the largest field in the brief history of the competition.

Next, having taken down the 11-player tournament in impressive fashion, the champion is ready for a few more amateur events this summer before heading off to Connecticut for her first year of college golf.

“I’m really excited and it’s really cool that I got the win in the biggest (WPGA Girls Match Play) event we’ve had,” Windfelder said. “And I’m really excited to take this to college. It shows me that I can win and do well in college. It gives me a boost of energy going into the season.”

To see the matches and results for the 5th WPGA Girls Match Play Invitational, click here (GGID: 24WPGAMATCHPLAY).

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 34,000 members. The WPGA conducts 14 individual competitions and 10 team events, and administers the WPGA Scholarship Fund and Western Pennsylvania Golf Hall of Fame.