Mick­el­son ca­reer slam on hold

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - SPORTS - By Josh Dubow

PEB­BLE BEACH, Calif. — Phil Mick­el­son looks like he won’t be able to cel­e­brate his 49th birth­day by com­plet­ing the ca­reer grand slam.

Need­ing to post a low score in the third round at Peb­ble Beach to get into con­tention Satur­day, Mick­el­son failed to drain birdie putts early and self-de­struc­ted late to fin­ish with a 4-over 75 and an­other dis­ap­point­ing week­end at the U.S. Open.

“To­day was the day I needed to go low,” Mick­el­son said. “I played well enough to do it. I had many op­por­tu­ni­ties. Didn’t putt well. Didn’t get them to go in. I left them short the whole time. And then I fin­ished poorly.”

Mick­el­son, who turns 49 on Sun­day, heads into the fi­nal round at 3 over par and far be­hind the lead­ers as he is run­ning out of chances to add the fi­nal piece of the ca­reer grand slam to his im­pres­sive ca­reer. Mick­el­son is play­ing his 28th U.S. Open and has a record six run­ner-up fin­ishes.

This was his fifth try at com­plet­ing the slam since he picked up the third leg at Muir­field in the 2013 Bri­tish Open. Now he will have to try to be­come the sixth player to do it when the U.S. Open re­turns to Winged Foot, where he had a one-shot lead go­ing into the fi­nal hole of the 2006 U.S. Open and made dou­ble bo­gey to fin­ish a shot be­hind.

This might have been his best chance re­main­ing at one of his fa­vorite cour­ses, where his grand­fa­ther served as a cad­die back when it opened 100 years ago. Mick­el­son has won the reg­u­lar PGA Tour stop here five times, in­clud­ing back in Fe­bru­ary, but will fall short once again when the big­gest prize is at stake.

He missed birdie putts at Nos. 7, 8 and 9 as he failed to take ad­van­tage on the scor­ing holes early.

Mick­el­son’s big prob­lems came on the back nine with a bo­gey on the par-5 14th and a bo­gey from the bunker on the par-3 17th. And then it re­ally came un­done on the par-5 18th, when he drove left into the Pa­cific. He hit a wedge into a bunker and when he finally walked off the green, Mick­el­son had a triple bo­gey.

“I felt like I played a lot bet­ter than I’m scor­ing,” Mick­el­son said. “And cer­tainly didn’t fin­ish this round very well.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.