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Puzzle #201 March 2018  "Far-fetched"

Instructions: Guess the words defined by the cryptic clues (answers vary in length from three to eight letters, six are capitalized, and one is a variant spelling) then enter them in the grid one after another in the same order as their clues, starting in the upper left corner. Across words that don't end at the right continue on the next row, and down words that don't end at the bottom continue in the next column. Seven across words and seven down words won't fit in the grid unless one of their letters is removed. Those fourteen letters, taken in order as they occur in across and down words, spell a four-word phrase related to the mystery entry.  Thanks to Kevin Wald for test-solving and editing this puzzle. If you are having trouble printing these puzzles, you can download an Adobe Acrobat version of the puzzle and grid.

Across

  1. Red Sox manager holds back snake
  2. Latent bent or gift
  3. Youth goes around ancient city to get dish
  4. In the class of ripened mango
  5. One hundred are a source of concern
  6. Artificial being playing Lego with Mark
  7. Choose essentially wrong particle
  8. Generous interpretation of braille
  9. Rodent turned north for lake
  10. Regulation of pace of victim in game
  11. Expression of small distance
  12. Mystery entry
  13. May replaces Peter in writing for fabric
  14. The French dame is legit
  15. Fire or flame of a bone
  16. Merit of Spanish free verse
  17. Maiden youth has got to refuse
  18. Ravage in death
  19. Hit and improperly deepen
  20. Class has no time for argument
  21. Prevent cervid ingesting last of wheat
  22. Verse for Don in residence upstairs
  23. Alarm in Tosca recording
  24. Sole desolated island of Estonia

Down

  1. Shorten mutt track
  2. Chain of eggs, about 500
  3. Insect in margin losing density
  4. Red tire punctured and put away
  5. More go nuts about former territory
  6. Ron came running for a good story
  7. Massenet opera doesn't start soon
  8. Money supply by end of day for Jennifer, the poker player
  9. Star-shaped stone found in sea
  10. Blocks of one mile affected speed
  11. Lead bar in California and Maine
  12. Line held by oversized end in ship's bottom
  13. Canada likely to embrace tennis player
  14. Momentarily covering sign
  15. Excellent flower for spring holiday
  16. Force of wild green yard
  17. Revealed holding past particle
  18. Guard girl seen in mirror
  19. Least constricted of forest's first new trees
  20. Body cavity of Cape mole after injury
  21. Very harsh cut made at the end
  22. Maneuver of feline turning with sudden involuntary muscular movement
  23. Cerebral lament is stricken