Abigail McWilliams Wins 96th Louisiana Women’s Amateur Championship in Dramatic Playoff Finish

June 23, 2024 | Maili Bartz

Final results of the Louisiana Golf Association’s 96th Louisiana Women’s Amateur Championship held at Lake Charles Country Club in Lake Charles, Louisiana on Sunday, June 23, 2024.  

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Lake Charles, Louisiana – It was an incredible day of golf at the Lake Charles Country Club, site of the 96th Louisiana Women’s Amateur Championship. Abigail McWilliams of Benton played 38 holes to emerge victorious at the end of the day. McWilliams, 16 years-old, shot a 3 over par 76 on Friday in stroke play qualifying and entered the 16-player match play bracket as the 5th seed. For her opening round of 16, McWilliams was matched against Jessica Varner of Baton Rouge winning the match 4 & 2.  Saturday afternoon in the Quarter-Finals McWilliams was matched up against Evelynn Artieta of Denham Springs and defeated her 1 up.  In the Semi-Final match Sunday morning, McWilliams defeated Daozeng Liu 2 up to secure her spot in the Championship Match.

In the championship against Maci Williams of Brusly, McWilliams never trailed. She played brilliantly on the front nine and was 3 up at the turn however, her opponent Williams, was a tough out and fought back to tie the match on the 15th hole setting the stage for a dramatic finish.

Anyone who has played the Lake Charles Country Club knows that it is difficult to play the last three holes at even par which is exactly what McWilliams and Williams were able to do. With the match tied after 18 holes, it was extended in a sudden death playoff and the two junior golfers returned to the par 5 18th hole to continue the match.

McWilliams applied the pressure on Williams by hitting 3 great shots to give herself a putt just on the fringe of the back of the green for birdie. Williams’ second shot veered right beyond the cart path and she appeared to be blocked out by two trees. She then hit an incredible recovery shot over the trees drawing it over to the green giving herself a 15-foot putt for birdie. Both girls nearly missed their birdie putts and the match continued on to the par 3 third hole, which shares a green with the 18th, a lovely setting for what would be the deciding hole.

Williams was first to play and hit her tee shot left of the green onto a mound leaving herself a difficult chip, but McWilliams was left in no better position when her tee shot found the right greenside bunker. McWilliams was first to play and hit the shot of the day from out of the bunker to 8 feet from the hole. Williams chipped narrowly and raced by the edge of the cup to 7 feet past. McWilliams was first to putt and absolutely drained the putt for par, an incredible up and down, something she was able to do all weekend. Williams was unable to answer and missed her par putt. The way these two competitors battled all weekend shows how bright the future of women’s golf is in Louisiana.

This marks McWilliams’ first Louisiana Women’s Amateur Championship victory. Hailing from a golfing family, her brother Noah McWilliams currently plays for LSU, and her father Robby is a multiple-time Louisiana Mid-Amateur and Senior Champion. Having her father caddying for her throughout the weekend made the win especially sweet.

Sydney Moss of Shreveport won the championship consolation match 4 & 3 over Kay Daniel of Covington. Shannon Hudson of Baton Rouge won First Flight 8 & 7 over Isabella Callaba of Lake Charles. Amanda Rothrock of Baton Rouge defeated Christina Popp of Lafayette 6 & 5 to win Second Flight. Cassidy Scroggins of Lake Charles was able to defeat Sandra Smith of Delhi 4 & 3 for the Third Flight Championship.

It was another hot Louisiana summer day with temperatures approaching the upper-90’s by mid-morning.  Lake Charles Country Club course was in excellent condition and played to a par 73 at approximately 6,008 yards for the Championship.  

About the LGA

The Louisiana Golf Association (LGA) is a mission-driven organization dedicated to unifying the golf community across Louisiana. Since its inception in 1920, the LGA has expanded its scope to offer a variety of championships, including the Junior Amateur Championship and the Louisiana Junior Golf Tour. The LGA is committed to providing exceptional services in Championship Administration, USGA Handicap System oversight, and Rules of Golf authority, ensuring fair play and integrity throughout the state.

The LGA supports golfers of all levels through its Course Measuring and Rating services, comprehensive tournament management, and educational seminars on the Rules of Golf and Amateur Status. By partnering with entities like the Audubon Golf Trail and Gulf States PGA, the LGA fosters growth and inclusivity in the sport.

As the authoritative body for amateur golf in Louisiana, the LGA maintains the WHS Handicap Index, crucial for assessing individual performance, and continues to uphold the game’s traditions and values. For more information, visit or contact us at 337-265-3938.

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Maili Bartz

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