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Eagle helps Skinner win by 2 Barrett ties for 4th at Lady Keystone


HERSHEY, Pa. -- A ninth-hole eagle 2 set up the round for Val Skinner, and she went on to shoot a 5-under-par 67 and win the Lady Keystone Open by two strokes at Hershey Country Club yesterday.

The 67 was the low round of a mild, sunshiny day and gav Skinner a 54-hole total of 210. Betsy King birdied two of the last four holes for 70212, followed by Julie Larsen, a second-year pro who kept it together enough for 72-213.

Second-round leader Brandie Burton birdied the third hole t open a four-stroke lead, then bogeyed the fourth and fifth. A birdie at the sixth was her last of the day, and she struggled home 75-214.

Tina Barrett, with a history of not doing well in area tournament since turning professional five years ago, took care of that with a 1-under-par 71 for 214 and a tie for fourth. The check for $19,121 sent her past the $500,000 level in career earnings.

Cindy Figg-Currier was the only other serious challenger durin the day, getting to 3-under-par before making a double-bogey 6 at the last hole for 71-215

Skinner, 32, winning for the fourth time in an 11-year career, bu her first since 1987, started the day tied for fifth, moved into a tie for the lead with the eagle, then went in front to stay with a chip-in birdie at the 11th.

I'm playing right now."

One shot that surprised her, though, was her first putt from the front edge at the ninth after Skinner's shot.

"It was slower than I thought,"she said of the green, as her bal stopped five feet short. She missed that one for her only three-putt of the day. For the round, she had three birdies, two bogeys, with the last bogey at No. 17, where she chipped short and missed from six feet.

It capped quite an eight-day period for Barrett, who had her bes McDonald's finish (tie 18th) last Sunday afternoon, then that evening became engaged to Dan Friedman, who is in the retail golf business. A November wedding is planned.

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