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GOLF ROUNDUP : Levi Closes With a 69, Wins Western by Four

From Associated Press

When Wayne Levi walked off the 15th green Sunday, three strokes in front with three holes to play, a spectator at the $1 million Western Open at Oak Brook, Ill., told him: “Watch out. Watson’s gonna get you.”

“No he isn’t,” Levi replied.

With Watson among the victims of a mass collapse on the final hole, Levi cruised to an unchallenged victory, his second win in three weeks on the PGA Tour.

He led by as many as six strokes and won by four with a closing 69 and a 275 total that tied the course record at Butler National set by Mark McCumber last year.

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“It’s a great feeling,” said Levi, winless in five years until he broke through last month at Atlanta.

“This is what you practice for all your life. I beat a great field on a great golf course.”

Levi was convincing in victory. He had a one-stroke lead when the round started, birdied the first two holes and was never in trouble.

Payne Stewart, who finished second at 279, took himself out of contention with bogeys on the sixth, seventh and eighth holes.

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Watson, however, made a late move.

A long putt on No. 15 put Watson within three strokes of the lead.

But he lost five shots to par over the last three holes, a slide that ended with two shots into the water and a triple-bogey seven on the final hole.

Peter Jacobsen, a runner-up in this tournament the last two years, appeared headed for a third consecutive second-place finish. But he, too, hit into the water on No. 18 for a double bogey.

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So did Mark Brooks, who also had a shot at second.

Jacobsen and Loren Roberts tied for third at 280, Jacobsen shooting 68 and Roberts 71.

Brooks, who matched par at 72, tied at 281 with Greg Norman, who shot 70. Watson’s 73 put him at 282.

Curtis Strange, who will seek a record-tying third consecutive U.S. Open title next week at nearby Medinah, had a 70, 283.

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The victory was worth $180,000 to Levi and increased his earnings this year to $399,880.

Patty Sheehan, playing a steady final round of one-under par 70, held off challenges from Ayako Okamoto of Japan and Kristi Albers to win a $650,000 LPGA tournament at Wilmington, Del., by four strokes.

Sheehan, shooting par or better for 61 of the final 62 holes, finished at nine-under par 275 over the 6,366-yard DuPont Country Club course.

Okamoto, who shot 71, came from three strokes back to tie Sheehan after nine holes. But she bogied No. 13 and double-bogied No. 16.

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“Patience probably played a big part in this win,” Sheehan said.

“I felt it was her tournament or mine,” Sheehan said of Okamoto. “I felt comfortable about that. I was playing well. I wasn’t losing patience, just plugging along.”

Albers, who started the final round six shots back, birdied Nos. 14 and 15 and eagled No. 16 to draw within three of the lead. But she couldn’t get any closer.

Albers shot 68 and finished in a tie for second with Okamoto, defending champion Betsy King and Cathy Gerring at 279. King had a 69 and Gerring a 71.

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Tied at 280 were Jane Geddes, Barb Mucha and Colleen Walker.

The victory was Sheehan’s second of the year earned her $97,500.


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