In Corning, N.Y., Kelli Kuehne attacked the final round of the Corning Classic yesterday with the poise of a veteran and the enthusiasm of a rookie.
Both paid off when she got her first LPGA Tour victory and pocketed the $112,500 winner's purse.
Kuehne, at 22 the youngest winner in the 21-year history of the tournament, shot a 2-under-par 70 for a one-stroke victory over Rosie Jones, who had a closing 72.
A flawless front nine including an eagle on the par-5 No. 5 and a rocky back nine left Kuehne at 10 under with a four-day total of 278. Joan Pitcock and Cindy McCurdy, with 67s, and defending champion Tammie Green, with a 68, were at 281.
"It hasn't sunk in yet," Kuehne said. "It probably won't until I'm on the plane tonight with the other players headed for the U.S. Women's Open."
Kuehne was undaunted by a field that included four 1999 tournament winners and nine past Corning Classic champions.
She tamed many of the bumpy greens and narrow fairways of the 6,062-yard, Corning Country Club course and even flirted with the tournament record of 20 under par set last year by Green.
"People kept telling me I'm young, and I should be patient," Kuehne said. "But I don't want to be patient. I want it now."
SENIOR PGA: In Augusta, Mo., Hale Irwin shot a 6-under-par 66 to win the Boone Valley Classic by two shots, his second victory in three years in the tournament played about 40 miles from his home.
Irwin, who has won two of his last three starts on the Senior PGA Tour, started the day two strokes behind second-round leader Bruce Summerhays and one behind five others.
He birdied three straight holes to take the lead going to the back nine, and he took it for good with a birdie on the par-3 12th. He had six birdies in the final round at the 6,731-yard Boone Valley Golf Club course and finished with a 54-hole total of 13-under 203.
Irwin earned $210,000 for the win to bring his total for the year to $656,860 and more than $14.1 million in his career.
Irwin's only other victory this season was the Nationwide Championship. He has 22 victories since joining the senior tour in 1995.
EUROPEAN PGA: Colin Montgomerie and Retief Goosen moved into the lead after the third round of the Volvo PGA Championship, two strokes ahead of Mark McNulty and Bernhard Langer, in Virginia Water, England.
Montgomerie shot a 5-under 67 to take a share of the lead with the South African Goosen, who shot a 2-under 70. Both are after their second European title this month with Goosen leading the season money list and Montgomerie the six-time defending money champion.
McNulty of Zimbabwe also had a 67 on the par-72, 7,006-yard west course at Wentworth. Langer, the leader after the first round, shot 70.