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GOLF ROUNDUP : Richard Makes Another Playoff, Beats Geddes

From Associated Press

Deb Richard is making big money working overtime.

Richard, who has been involved in all three playoffs on the LPGA Tour this year and won two of them, sank a 15-foot birdie putt Sunday on the first extra hole to win the Phar-Mor Tournament over Jane Geddes at Vienna, Ohio.

“Two out of three ain’t bad,” Richard said. “I actually enjoy them. I’m more nervous on the finishing holes. In the playoff, it’s like you have nothing to lose. You just kind of go at it.

“One thing I learned a long time ago is to always expect the person I’m playing to make it. I was thinking I’ve got to make my putt to win or to stay in it. That’s the way I approach it.”

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But when Geddes just missed a 20-foot birdie putt on the first playoff hole, Richard knew what she had to do to win.

Only minutes earlier, she faced almost the same putt on the 18th hole and left it short, forcing the playoff. This time she sank the 15-footer.

Richard shot a four-under-par 68 to finish at nine-under 207 along with Geddes, who also had a 68.

Julie Inkster, who started the round with a three-stroke lead, faded to a 75 and finished at 210.

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Brad Faxon made a par on the first playoff hole to beat defending champion Chip Beck and win the Buick Open at Grand Blanc, Mich., for his first victory on the PGA Tour.

Faxon is the 10th first-time winner this year and the fifth in a row. It was the 12th playoff this season, including an 18-hole playoff at the U.S. Open.

Winning the Buick Open has been bad news for the five previous champions. None has won a PGA Tour event since. Robert Wrenn, Scott Verplank, Leonard Thompson and Beck have been blanked since winning the tournament.

Faxon finished with a six-under-par 66 and Beck had a 69 to tie at 17-under 271.

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Scott Hoch (67), who had a tournament-record 63 in the first round, Jerry Pate (66) and John Cook (65) finished tied for third at 272.

Defending champion George Archer held off Jim Colbert and Larry Laoretti to retain his title in the $450,000 Northville Long Island Senior tournament at Jericho, N.Y.

Archer, who started the day in a tie with Laoretti, shot a three-under-par 69 for a 54-hole total of 204.

Colbert, 50, in his rookie season on the PGA Senior Tour, started the day in a five-way tie for third, three strokes off the lead. He shot a 68 to finish tied at 206 with Laoretti, who shot 71.

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It marked the third time that Laoretti has finished second this year.

Bob Charles shot 69 and took fourth place at 207.

Phil Mickelson became only the fifth qualifying medalist to win the Western Open with match-play victories over Diego Ventureira of Argentina and Justin Leonard of Dallas at Benton Harbor, Mich.

Others to pull off the feat were Scott Verplank in 1985, Rick Fehr in 1982, Curtis Strange in 1974 and Ben Crenshaw in 1973.

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Mickelson defeated Leonard, 2 and 1, in the finals after beating Ventureira in the semifinals.

Mickelson won the first hole against Leonard and went 4-up at the sixth hole. After seeing the advantage slip to three holes, he birdied No. 12.

Leonard then made three consecutive birdies, including a 25-foot putt on No. 15, and Mickelson bogeyed the 16th hole to cut the lead to 1-up.

But he clinched the title with a 25-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole.

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