Golf Roundup : Crenshaw's Putter Saves Pars and a Victory at New Orleans

From Times Wire Services

Ben Crenshaw sank four critical par-saving putts on the final seven holes to hold off Curtis Strange and win the $500,000 USF&G; tournament by three strokes Sunday at New Orleans.

Crenshaw, who was never headed or tied during the final round, shot a five-under-par 67 for a 268 total, 20 strokes under par on the Lakewood Country Club course.

The victory, the 13th of his pro career, was worth $90,000 and increased his 1987 earnings to $227,957.

Crenshaw, regarded as one of the finest putters on the PGA tour, turned back a late bid by Strange with saves of par down the stretch.

Strange, who trailed by four strokes after nine holes in the final round, closed to within two shots at one point. But that was as close as he got. Strange, who also shot a 67, finished at 271.

Ronnie Black was third with a 70 for 273. Sam Randolph, Dick Mast and Keith Clearwater were tied at 275. Randolph shot a 67.

Betsy King rallied from six strokes back to defeat Jan Stephenson by two strokes in a $200,000 women's tournament at Tucson.

King went ahead of Stephenson for good with an eagle on the par 5 13th hole and held on for a four-under par 68 and 72-hole total of 281--seven under par.

Stephenson, who led since Thursday's opening round, bogeyed three of four holes in a disastrous series that ended at the 11th hole.

She ended the round by bogeying No. 18, which left her at 75, and 283 for the tournament. Sandra Palmer finished third at 284.

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