No One Better … So Far

Lauren and Katelyn Lehigh of Loveland share stroke-play medalist honors with another pair of sisters at U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball; match play begins on Monday

By Gary Baines – 5/12/2024

The U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship is being held for the ninth time, and sisters Lauren and Katelyn Lehigh of Loveland can trace their participation in the event — or, more specifically, its qualifiers — back to almost the beginning, even though they’re just 23 and 20 years old, respectively. 

Lauren first qualified for the Four-Ball in 2015, with then-Loveland High School teammate Aili Bundy — for the 2016 national championship. But they elected not to play in that year’s Four-Ball because the national event conflicted with the girls state high school tournaments. 

In the fall of 2016 Lauren Lehigh teamed with her younger sister at the qualifier for the 2017 Four-Ball, but they finished second in a qualifying tournament at which just one team advanced.

Fast forward almost eight years and the Lehighs are not only competing in the 2024 U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball, but they’re making some noise. In fact, the sisters from Colorado — each a winner of two individual state high school titles while at Loveland H.S. — shared medalist honors after the 36-hole stroke-play portion of the event.

The Lehighs birdied the last two holes — Lauren doing the honors from 2 feet on the 17th hole at Oak Hills Country Club and Katelyn from 15 feet on the 18th — to finish off a better-ball 9-under-par 62 on Sunday. They left them at a record 14 under for two days, the same as Georgians Caroline and Catie Craig — another of the six sets of sisters in the field. Coincidentally, those two are also 23 and 20, with Caroline being the elder.

“Everything kind of went our way today,” Lauren Lehigh said. “It was just smooth and easy.”

So on Monday, the Lehighs will be among the 32 teams who start match play in a quest for a national title. There’s still a long way to go, but one set of players with strong Colorado ties has already won this national championship as then-Colorado State University teammates Katrina Prendergast and Ellen Secor claimed the championship in 2018.

Lauren Lehigh just completed her college career at the University of New Mexico — where she established the program’s single-season scoring record (71.67 in 2023-24) — while Katelyn is two seasons into her time at Fresno State. Lauren advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2022 U.S. Women’s Amateur. Katelyn won an individual college title in September.

A potentially awkward situation was avoided on Sunday regarding another Colorado team competing in the Women’s Four-Ball. Hadley Ashton and Logan Hale of Erie, each of whom has won a girls 4A state high school individual title, were in the top 10 after Saturday’s opening round of the championship. Had they finished in the top 32, they would have advanced to Monday’s match play — and potentially beyond. 

The complication for the two — who made the Four-Ball field after originally being alternates — is that they’re scheduled to compete on Tuesday in regional qualifying for the state high school tournament. And if a golfer doesn’t play in the qualifier, they don’t compete in the state meet, which would have been odd for two recent state champions. 

However, Ashton and Hale struggled to a better-ball 73 on Sunday and finished a stroke out of a playoff for the final match-play berths. Their 2-under 140 total left them in a tie for 34th place, which ended their run at this U.S. Women’s Four-Ball.

Also failing to make match play were University of Colorado teammates Morgan Miller and Maria Eidhagen Harrouch (72-69).

Scores of teams with strong Colorado connections competing in the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball in San Antonio:

Advance to Match Play Round of 64

T1. Lauren Lehigh and Katelyn Lehigh 66-62–128

Failed to Advance to Match Play

Hadley Ashton and Logan Hale, Erie 67-73—140

CU teammates Morgan Miller and Maria Eidhagen Harrouch 72-69–141

For all the scores, CLICK HERE

Sunday’s stroke-play co-medalists, from left: Katelyn and Lauren Lehigh, and Catie and Caroline Craig. (Chris Keane/USGA)

About the Writer: Gary Baines has covered golf in Colorado continuously since 1983. He was a sports writer at the Daily Camera newspaper in Boulder, then the sports editor there, and has written regularly for since 2009. The University of Colorado Evans Scholar alum was inducted into the Colorado Golf Hall of Fame in 2022. He owns and operates