Sure enough, Robbins drew first blood with a birdie on the par-5 2nd hole. King, meanwhile, struggled a bit with her bobbing impulse and hit some high knuckleballs—straight shots, but impressionable, had the wind been stiffer. After bogeying number 10, King dropped into a third-place tie with Fruhwirth, three strokes behind Robbins—at which time, King admitted later, she began thinking of second place. But three birdies down the stretch by King, coupled with a bogey, bogey, double-bogey crash by Robbins, put her on the tee of the watery par-5 18th with a two-shot lead on Tschetter, the Ben Hogan prot�g�e who finished second in last year's Women's Open. "I hit the ball real well coming in, but I didn't expect Kelly to suddenly lose it like that," King said. "Maybe it was just my time to win."
And maybe it was time for King to join Sandra Haynie, Nancy Lopez and Patty Sheehan as the only players in the past 20 years to win a major championship after gaining entrance to the LPGA Hall of Fame. (Four rounds without a three-putt? King couldn't recall it happening before in her career.) Three dead-level swings on the 18th got King over the hole's signature moat. Two putts later she had her sixth major and the winner's check for $135,000.
"I'm not surprised Betsy won on Easter," said Marshall, who finished 10 shots back. But King, while conceding that resurrection made for an apt metaphor, insisted that it was swing technique, not religious inspiration, that had made her eligible for the now-obligatory winner's dive into Lake Alcott. "I'm not trying to find a new golf swing," she explained. "I'm just trying to get back to where I was."
Where was she? Oh, yeah—on top.
For the record, King revealed that in 1994 she had consulted a sports psychologist—not a hypnotist—for help in dealing with, of all things, the media. But they had talked about competition as well. "I think a lot of the things sports psychologists tell you to do, I do naturally," King said. "So we decided it was O.K. for me to think swing mechanics a little."
O.K.? Just O.K.?
For Betsy King, it's practically gospel.