Phil Mickelson flew cross country to attend his daughter’s eighth-grade graduation earlier this week, then flew back to Pennsylvania on Thursday, got two hours of sleep, came to a course where the practice area is a mile from the actual golf course and, in lefty fashion, shot a three-under 67 to be the clubhouse leader at the U.S. Open.
Luke Donald, who was still on the course when play was halted due to darkness, is at -4 and leads the tournament.
He did not practice. He did not sleep. But sometimes with Mickelson, the less he thinks the better he does.
Mickelson reportedly arrived at 4:15 a.m. EDT on Thursday after a five-hour red-eye flight from California, where he attended his daughter’s graduation. His tee time was 7:11 a.m. EDT at Merion Golf Club. He may have benefited from a three-hour rain delay after his round started, which allowed him to take a catnap. For Mickelson, who is the only person to have five second place finishes at the U.S. Open, this was just his second round under par in his last 11 rounds at the U.S. Open. He had four birdies and just one bogey on his card.
Mickelson has never won the U.S. Open and is actually playing this week without a driver.