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NICKLAUS GRABS U.S. SENIOR OPEN LEAD

SHARE NICKLAUS GRABS U.S. SENIOR OPEN LEAD

Jack Nicklaus climbed past a faltering Dale Douglass and charged to the third-round lead Saturday at the U.S. Senior Open.

Nicklaus birdied the last three holes to finish the round with a 4-under-par 67. He stood 5-under at 208 entering Sunday's final round.Nicklaus, who hasn't won since the Senior Open two years ago, capped his round with a birdie on the 450-yard, par-4 18th hole - which has played the toughest on the course all week.

One stroke behind was Douglass, who had steadily built a three-stroke lead with some precision iron play before bogeying the final two holes. Douglass drove behind a tree on the 17th hole and missed the green on the 18th.

The Colorado native, who finished with a 68, appeared headed for sole possession of the third-round lead after birdies at Nos. 15 and 16 to go 6-under.

Chi Chi Rodriguez, the first- and second-round leader, began the day with a bogey. But three straight bogeys on the back nine dropped him from the lead.

Isao Aoki, who began the day a shot behind Rodriguez, lost four strokes to par on the front nine and never recovered.

Two shots off the lead was Kermit Zarley, whose carded a 69. Rodriguez, who limped home with a 75, was at 212, along with Tom Weiskopf and Larry Ziegler. Ray Floyd and Miller Barber finished at 213. Aoki, who had a 76, was at 214.

Lee Trevino, Jim Colbert, Dave Stockton and Simon Hobday stood at 215.

"I had a couple of bobbles today," Nicklaus said. "But it was one of the best rounds I've had this year.

"Saturday is the day you usually get yourself in or out of the tournament. It's the first Saturday I've gotten myself in the tournament in quite a while."

At Howland, Ohio, Karen Lunn of Australia rolled in a 10-foot putt for eagle on the closing hole to pull even with Missie McGeorge after 36 holes of the Youngstown-Warren LPGA Classic.

At Williamsburg, Va., Dillard Pruitt tied the course record with a 9-under-par 62 and vaulted into a 1-stroke lead over John Adams after 54 holes of the Anheuser-Busch Golf Classic.