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Laura Davies, 23, of Ottershaw, England, shot one-under-par 71 in an 18-hole playoff to defeat Ayako Okamoto by two strokes and JoAnne Carner by three strokes and win the 42nd U.S. Women's Open at Plainfield Country Club in Edison, New Jersey. She had shot rounds of 72-70-72-71285. Davies became the fourth foreign golfer to win the championship.

Fay Crocker of Uruguay won in 1955, Catherine Lacoste of France won in 1967 and Jan Stephenson of Australia won in 1983. Bonnie Lauer and Dot Germain shot opening round 69s to take the early lead. Rain interrupted the second round for one hour and 47 minutes. Davies' second-round 70 for a 36 hole total of 142 gave her a one-stroke advantage over Okamoto, Sandra Palmer and Jody Rosenthal, each of whom shot 71.

Carner was tied with Davies through 16 holes and was in position to take the lead when play was suspended for the day. She returned the next morning and bogeyed the 17th and 18th to fall two strokes back, tied with Nancy Lopez at 144. Sixty-eight players made the 36-hole cut at eight-over-par 152.

A third-round 70 gave Okamoto a 54-hole total of 213, one stroke better than Davies, who posted an even-par 72. Martha Nause, who followed her opening-round 76 with rounds of 69 and 70, was in third place at 215. Carner, who shot 72, and Deedee Roberts, who shot 69, were in fourth, three strokes off the lead at 216. Only 40 of the 68 players got onto the course before rain caused a postponement of the fourth round until Monday.

Okamoto built her lead to three strokes with birdies at the second, third and sixth holes, but a double-bogey at the ninth and a birdie by Davies left them tied. After playing the first nine in two-under-par 34, Carner caught Davies and Okamoto, both of whom played the second nine in even par, with a birdie on the 15th. She took the lead when she holed a four-foot birdie putt on 17. However, Carner missed a five-foot par putt on 18 to force the first three-way playoff in Women's Open history.

After the three parred the first three holes of the playoff Davies shouldered the first lead with a birdie on the fourth. Her lead grew to three when Okamoto and Carner each bogeyed two of the next three holes. Her lead was cut to two when she bogeyed the seventh. Carner birdied the ninth to cut the lead to one, and grabbed a share of the lead when Davies bogeyed the 10th.

Okamoto was one stroke behind. Carner dropped strokes at the 11th and 13th to fall behind Okamoto. Davies birdied the 14th and 15th to lead Okamoto by three and Carner by four. She parred in for the championship, Japan's Michiko Hattori earned low amateur honors at 297, nine over par. The USGA accepted a record 711 entries for the championship.


Starts - 23

Best Finish - Winner in 1987

Rds - 75

Cuts Made - 14

Top 3 - 1

Top 5 - 1

Top 10 - 4

Top 25 - 9

Avg. - 73.36

Scores In 60s - 9

Rds Under Par - 16

Earnings - $306,622.68
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