Phil has made strides, but lipped putt will sting

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – Fifteen minutes after watching his title hopes carom off the left edge of the final hole he faced at Pebble Beach, Phil Mickelson could only smile and shake his head.

This was where the drought was supposed to end. Hallowed ground, familiar territory, a place he knew and loved against a leaderboard that didn’t seem to pack much of a punch. In the end, it turned into just the latest piece of scar tissue lining the psyche of a five-time major champ.

Mickelson began the day two shots clear at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, seemingly set for a coronation that would lead to his fifth tournament title and first win in nearly three years. Instead, he faltered almost right out of the gates and watched helplessly as Vaughn Taylor caught and passed him.

A birdie on the penultimate hole set the stage for a dramatic Mickelson rally, but that scene ended with him in a state of shock after his final birdie putt – one that would have forced a playoff with Taylor – caught the edge and turned away.

The longest victory drought of his professional career, dating all the way back to the 2013 Open Championship, will extend at least a little while longer.

“Disappointing not to have finished it off today,” Mickelson said. “It’s disappointing not to play a little bit more mistake-free on a final round with the lead. There were a lot of opportunities, easy up-and-downs that I didn’t capitalize on to keep the round going. I let a lot of shots slide there.”

Source : The Golf Channel

posted at 15 Feb 2016 10:12:22



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