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Phil Mickelson acknowledges fans after disappointing round

Phil Mickelson didn’t disappoint his fans Saturday, spending about 20 minutes signing autographs after his round.

The five-time major champion was a disappointment on the course, though, shooting a 3-over-par 74 in the third round of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin. He’s in 69th place at 5-under 208 with a final-round tee time of 7 a.m.

The 49-year-old started the third round four strokes behind but now trails by 17.

Mickelson endeared himself even more to Las Vegas fans when he mentioned during the tournament that he roots for the NHL’s Golden Knights.

“I know you went to the Stanley Cup Final your first year and the town became hockey crazed,” Mickelson said. “I find that a great story, so I’ve enjoyed pulling for the team. I’m not very hockey knowledgeable, but I do enjoy watching the playoffs and saw them do very well.”

Mental moments for Oda

Former UNLV All-American John Oda has full status on the Korn Ferry Tour in 2020, but he hopes to qualify for a few more PGA Tour events.

Oda said he plans to play in several PGA Tour Monday qualifiers, as he did this past week to secure a tournament spot.

Oda opened with rounds of 66 and 69 but shot 74 on Saturday. He’s tied for 72nd place at 4-under 209.

“I am happy to be out here playing in the Shriners on my home course, but obviously I wish I would have had a better Saturday,” Oda said. “I missed a couple putts here and there today, and this is such a momentum game. If those putts go in, it’s a different story. It was just kind of eating away at me today, and I let it get to me, but it’s all good.”

Oda’s caddie is PGA Tour player Dean Wilson, a former Las Vegas resident and 2016 Las Vegas Golf Hall of Fame inductee.

Vegas roundup

Scores of Las Vegas pros: Ryan Moore (-15), Adam Scott (-15), Collin Morikawa (-13), Jack Trent (-11), Maverick McNealy (-10), Charley Hoffman (-9).

Koepka’s difficulties

Chase Koepka, brother of world No. 1 Brooks, is at 3-under 210 after shooting a third-round 75. Brooks Koepka missed the cut Friday.

Kilgore heading to Masters

Local junior Nicholas Kilgore qualified for the 2020 Drive, Chip and Putt finals in the 14-15 age division Sept. 23 at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California. The competition is April 5 at Augusta National before the Masters.

Kilgore served as a Shriners standard bearer this weekend.

According to Drive, Chip and Putt website writer Brian Robin, “Kilgore dominated the boys 14-15 division with the day’s best score of 172 points.”

Freelance writer Brian Hurlburt can be reached at bhurlburt5@gmail.com or @LVGolfInsider.

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