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U.S. Open champion Laura Davies would have been better o

August 1, 1987

ST. MELLION, England (AP) _ U.S. Open champion Laura Davies would have been better off had she not found a ball she hit into tall grass at the $165,000 British Women’s Open golf tournament.

″I was almost wishing it had stayed lost,″ Davies said Friday.

Instead she hacked at the ball three times to get out of the grass, chipped onto the green and took two putts for a double bogey seven on the first hole.

She overcame that to shoot a 1-under-par 72 Friday for a two-shot lead after two rounds of the $165,000 British Women’s Open Championship.

Davies was seven shots behind her playing partner, first-round leader Sally Little, after her poor start. But she birdied six of her last 11 holes to finish with a 36-hole score of 1-under-par 145.

American Muffin Spencer-Devlin, third in this event two years ago, shot a 5-under-par 68 and was second at 147.

″I was pretty lucky and got some good bounces out there,″ Spencer-Devlin said after her six-birdie round.

Little, who shot an opening-round 69, ballooned to an 80. She made three double-bogeys and fell to 149.

After the episode at the first hole, Davies told her caddie that she felt like calling it a day.

″I thought it was going to be a bad day,″ she said. ″I was expecting something to go wrong because it has all been going right for so long.

Instead, she countered the strong, blustery winds that turned the course into a nightmare for many of her competitors.

Davies, who won the U.S. Open in a playoff Tuesday, holed an eight-foot putt for par at the second hole and from then on, her round steadily improved.

Her six birdies included three 2s, although she also double-bogeyed the 403-yard 15th hole when she put her ball into a bunker and missed a three-foot putt.

She also wasted a chance to improve her lead on the final hole, missing a 20-foot putt for an eagle and a two-footer for a birdie.

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