Dufner keeps lead at CareerBuilder; Phil six back


Phil Mickelson thrilled the crowds for a third straight day, but Jason Dufner continued to go low in Palm Springs. Here's the skinny heading into the final round at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

Leaderboard: Jason Dufner (-23), Jamie Lovemark (-21), Adam Hadwin (-20), David Lingmerth (-18), Phil Mickelson (-17), Andrew Loupe (-17), Ryan Palmer (-17), Kevin Na (-17), John Huh (-17)

What it means: Dufner started with the lead and got off to a bit of a shaky start at La Quinta, but he rebounded on the second nine with a 7-under 29 to finish with the lead. He only missed one fairway on Saturday and continued to pour in the putts. Dufner recorded 28 putts, his highest total of the week, but still tied his lowest round, a 64 Thursday at the Nicklaus Course.

Round of the day: Na and Lingmerth both torched the Nicklaus Course for 10-under 62s. Na closed with a second-nine 28, finishing with six birdies and an eagle. Lingmerth moved into fourth place with eight birdies and an eagle.

Best of the rest: Dufner and Hadwin both turned in 64s, despite both players making two bogeys on their scorecards. Si Woo Kim also turned in a 64 on the Nicklaus Course to move into a tie for 13th.

Biggest disappointment: World No. 11 Zach Johnson figured to be one of the favorites this week, but he didn’t come close to making the cut after rounds of 73-71-67. Billy Horschel, Luke Donald and Nick Watney also missed the cut.

Main storyline heading into Sunday: While most of the eyeballs will be on Mickelson, who is six back, Dufner is in the driver’s seat to capture his first title since the 2013 PGA Championship. But Lovemark has been in the mix all week. He’s shot three straight 65s as he looks to win for the first time on the PGA Tour.

Shot of the day: Mickelson’s flop shot was pretty sweet, but for the second straight day we have to hand it to an amateur ace:

Quote of the day: "I’m just playing golf like you should.” - Dufner