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Golf

Kerr romps by 12, poised to be No. 1

A Tribune staff, wire report
Published:   |   Updated: July 11, 2013 at 06:20 PM
PITTSFORD, N.Y. -

Cristie Kerr soared to a 12-stroke victory at the LPGA Championship on Sunday in one of the most lopsided wins at a major, leaving her in position to become the first American ranked No. 1.

Kerr closed with a birdie for 6-under 66, finishing at 19-under 269 and leading all four rounds. This was her second major title, the other coming at the 2007 U.S. Women's Open.

"It's been such an amazing week," she said. "To play here well on a golf course this tough and to win by that many shots in a major championship - that's just unreal."

Kerr began the final round with an eight-stroke lead on a humid, overcast day at Locust Hill Country Club. She opened with six straight pars before birdieing three of her next four holes.

By winning the $337,500 purse at the $2.25 million tourney, Kerr was projected by the LPGA to overtake Japan's Ai Miyazato when the world rankings are released today. Miyazato needed to finish second to remain No. 1.

Kerr is the first American to win the LPGA Championship since Juli Inkster in 2000. She becomes only the fifth player to hold the No. 1 spot since the rankings were introduced in 2006.

Miyazato shot 66 to finish at 5 under in a tie for third with Jiyai Shin (71). Song-Hee Kim (69) finished second.

Kerr's margin of victory beat the previous LPGA Championship record by one stroke set by Betsy King in 1992.

PGA: Bubba Watson won for the first time on the PGA Tour, coming from six shots down to win the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Conn., in a three-way playoff.

Watson sunk a 3-foot par putt on the second playoff hole to beat Scott Verplank and Corey Pavin, after they all finished at 14 under.

Justin Rose, who was coming off his first PGA Tour win earlier this month at the Memorial, had a three-stroke lead coming into Sunday.

But the 29-year-old Englishman was 1 over on the front nine, and collapsed on the back, shooting a 5-over 75.

Pavin was eliminated on the first playoff hole.

Verplank left his tee shot short on the second playoff hole, the par-3 16th, and came up short on a birdie putt.

CHAMPIONS: Loren Roberts birdied the final hole for a closing 7-under 65 to win the Dick's Sporting Goods Open in Endicott, N.Y., by one stroke against Fred Funk.

Roberts hit a pitching wedge to 6 feet and made birdie at the final hole at En-Joie Golf Club to finish at 15-under 201 and edge Funk, who also shot a 65. It was the 12th victory on the Champions Tour for the 54-year-old Roberts, who rallied from five shots behind with eight holes to play.

FSGA: Sean Dale of Jacksonville won the 93rd Florida State Amateur Championship, firing a 3-under-par 285 at Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando. Dale shot a 3-under 69 Sunday. Zachary Primavera of Lynn Haven (73-288) was second. Brad Brunner of Tampa (78-292) and Tyler Hock of Ocala (73-292) tied for third.

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