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Strange, Fleisher share lead when darkness finishes play

Curtis Strange had a 10-foot birdie putt for the lead when he walked away in darkness Thursday in the Northern Telecom Open at Tucson, Ariz. Strange was 6-under-par and tied for the lead with Bruce Fleisher when play was halted. Fleisher, 43, also was unable to finish in the rain-delayed round. He was 6-under with three holes to go. In all, 66 golfers didn't finish their rounds. At Melbourne, Australia, Greg Norman and Roger Mackay fired 69s to share the first-round lead in the Australian Masters. Norman is bidding for his seventh Masters title.

YACHTING: With strategist John Bertrand at the helm, Dennis Conner's Stars & Stripes defeated Bill Koch's Defiant by 55 seconds. The win keeps Stars & Stripes ahead of Defiant in the point standings, 5-2. Credit for the win went to the new keel, rudder and mast combination installed late Wednesday.

STATE HALL OF FAME: Florida A&M football coach Ken Riley, former University of Florida receiver Wes Chandler, former Dolphins receiver Paul Warfield and Jack Nelson, coach of the 1976 Olympic women's swim team, will be inducted into the Florida Sports Hall of Fame April

13.

TENNIS: At Brussels, Dade City's Jim Courier, the world's top-ranked player, and No.

2 Stefan Edberg advanced at the Donnay Indoor Championship. At Linz, Austria, No.

3 seed Mary Pierce beat Claudia Kohde-Kilsch 6-1, 7-6 (7-2). Pierce is a former Tampa resident and trains in Bradenton.

FOOTBALL: Former Ohio State running back Robert Smith met with coach John Cooper but no decision was reached on Smith's possible return to the team. Smith, who led the Buckeyes in rushing (1,126 yards) his freshman year, quit in August, saying the coaches didn't put enough emphasis on academics.

ET CETERA: Oklahoma's Gary Dickinson, a non-winner since '83, leads a PBA event at Peoria, Ill. Two-time winner Gordon Johncock and Stan Fox are the first entries for the Indianapolis 500, May

24.

BOXING: A heavyweight championship fight between Larry Holmes and Evander Holyfield likely will be announced Monday, the Baltimore Sun reported. The fight would be in Las Vegas in May. Holyfield, the current champ, will be guaranteed $21-million. Holmes, a former champ, will get $10-million.

ET CETERA: Two-time winner Gordon Johncock and Stan Fox are the first entries for the Indianapolis 500, May

24. Florida State's Paul Spray won the 1-meter dive at the ACC men's swimming and diving championships at Chapel Hill, N.C. FSU was fifth after the first day. Johnathen Smith's 2-run homer in the second inning led No.

1-ranked Miami to a 6-1 win over FIU.

_ Compiled by Mike Sappington

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