May 03, 2014
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
- Phil Mickelson has five top-five finishes at the Wells Fargo Championship. (Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Phil Mickelson called Saturday's 63 a "very meaningful round."
Not only was the round of 9 under Mickelson's best in an already impressive resume at Quail Hollow, the 63 put him back where he's become accustomed -- among the leaders at the Wells Fargo Championship.
So Mickelson, who has seven top-10 finishes in 10 starts here, including solo third a year ago, will start the final round at 11 under. Friday's 75, which had tied his highest score here, was firmly in the rear-view mirror when Mickelson signed his scorecard.
"I was able to put everything together," he said. "I played well from tee to green. I hit the ball well, put it in play, I hit good iron shots and was able to capitalize on those shots with some good putts, and it feels good because I hadn't really been able to put it all together this year.
"... It felt close, hasn't felt far away, and to put it together today, it's nice."
Mickelson has yet to post a top-10 finish in 2014. His best is a tie for 12th at the Shell Houston Open but Saturday's 63 -- Mickelson's lowest in 11 starts this season -- has given him a realistic shot at his 43rd PGA TOUR victory.
Mickelson made seven birdies and a 13-footer for eagle at the seventh hole in the third round. The bulk of the scoring came in a front-nine 29 as Mickelson played Nos. 3-8 in 7 under.
Mickelson's run started with a 6-footer. He drained a 30-footer on No. 4, then made birdie putts of 7 and 38 feet before the eagle putt. Mickelson capped the spurt with a 3-footer at No. 8 after nearly driving the green on the 318-yard par 4.
Mickelson then made a 9-foot birdie putt at No. 13 and a 5-footer on the par-5 15th. He also parred all three holes in the challenging Green Mile after playing them in 3 over during the first two rounds.
That said, Mickelson did find the right fairway bunker on the 18th hole and came up short of the green with his second shot. He finished with a flourish, though, chipping to 2 feet for the save-- much to the delight of the partisan crowd.
"It was a big momentum up-and-down," Mickelson said.
Phil Mickelson interview after Round 3 of Wells Fargo