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Golf Roundup : Wrenn Gets Win With Near-Record 26 Under

July 27, 1987

Robert Wrenn finished with a near-record 26-under-par 262 Sunday for his first PGA Tour victory in the $600,000 Buick Open at Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club at Grand Blanc, Mich.

Wrenn, who has been on the tour since 1984, finished seven strokes ahead of Michigan native Dan Pohl, who was at 19-under 269. Scott Hoch was third at 270.

The record for a 72-hole tour event is 27-under, shared by Ben Hogan, who won the 1945 Portland Invitational with a 261, and Mike Souchak, who won the 1955 Texas Open with a 257.

Wrenn, 27, whose only other victory as a pro came in the 1983 Indonesia Open, had a chance to equal the record when his 12-foot eagle putt at No. 13, a 490-yard, par-5, put him 27 under.

However, he put his second shot in a bunker guarding the right side of the 14th green, and his four-foot putt to save par slid just past the hole for only Wrenn's third bogey of the tournament.

Wrenn's previous best finish on the tour was a tie for ninth at the 1985 Kemper Open and at this year's Deposit Guaranty, played the same week as the Masters.

Wrenn had a 54-hole total of 195, 21-under-par, a three-round record on the 7,014-yard Warwick Hills course.

Wrenn, who had bogeyed only two holes during the first three rounds, bogeyed two of the final five holes Sunday.

Wrenn, 5-8 and 155 pounds, birdied No. 1, a 567-yard, par-5 hole, and birdied No. 3, a 187-yard, par-3 and made the turn at 23-under.

Wrenn birdied the first two holes on the back side--No. 10, a 401-yard, par-4 and No. 11, a 190-yard, par-3--to go 25 under.

The eagle at No. 13 put him at 27 under, but then Wrenn's game started to falter.

Wrenn's victory earned him $108,000--bringing his season earnings to $123,531, and his career winnings to $182,796. He also won use of a new car for one year.

Thunderstorms postponed the last round of the 42nd U.S. Women's Open at Edison Township, N.J., and the final 18 holes were rescheduled for today. ABC will televise at 1 p.m.

Ayako Okamoto of Japan leads the tournament after three rounds with a 3-under-par total of 213, one shot ahead of Laura Davies.

David Ishii of the United States won the $400,000 Japan PGA championship by one stroke as his nearest rival faltered on the 17th hole at Ichihara, Japan.

Ishii, of Hawaii, celebrated his 32nd birthday by winning $72,000 to bring his season earnings to $259,333.

Ishii and Australian Brian Jones were tied through the 16th hole at 8-under par, but Jones bogeyed the 17th and Ishii parred it en route to a 1-under-par 71 and a 280 total.

Jones also shot a 71, ending with a 281 total, and shared second place with Japan's Seiichi Kanai. Each won $33,600.

Neil Coles of Britain shot a 3-over-par 73 and held off the charge of New Zealand's Bob Charles by one stroke to win the $320,000 Senior British Open title at Turnberry, Scotland.

Coles, whose previous biggest payday on the regular tour was $15,000, earned $40,000 by finishing at 1-under 279. Charles was at 280 after a final-round 67.

Arnold Palmer, who started the last round five shots behind Coles but twice got to within two, finished at 74-285--one ahead of Britain's Peter Butler, who had a 73 Sunday.

South Africa's Harold Henning carded two birdies and an eagle for a 70 to gain fifth at 289, two shots ahead of countryman Gary Player, who had a 75, and Britain's Ross Whitehead, who had a 74.

Gordon Brand Jr. of Britain birdied the 18th hole to hold off Jose-Marie Olazabal and David A. Russell and win the $290,000 Dutch Open at Hilversum, Holland.

Brand won $48,000 by finishing with a 3-under-par 69 for a total of 16-under-par 272.

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