Phil Mickelson made it to the weekend in the Phoenix Open. Another left-hander and a fellow former Arizona State player set the pace.
A week after withdrawing from Torrey Pines because of back pain, Mickelson shot a 4-under 67 in his afternoon round Friday at cool and breezy TPC Scottsdale. The defending champion and former Sun Devil was eight shots behind co-leaders Bubba Watson and Matt Jones.
"I'm not totally out of it," Mickelson said. "Obviously, I'd like to be closer, but as we have seen in the past, there is that 8-, 9-, 10-, in some cases 11-under round out there."
Watson, the long-hitting left-hander who won the 2012 Masters, followed his opening 64 with a 66 to reach 12-under 130. Jones, the Australian who played at ASU and lives in Scottsdale, had his second straight 65.
"It's right where I want to be going into the weekend," Watson said. "I had two sloppy bogeys coming down the stretch, but I will take it."
Jones birdied four of his last six holes. He and Watson played in the morning.
"We definitely got the good side of the draw," Jones said.
Harris English and Greg Chalmers shot 67s to reach 10 under.
Despite the weather, the PGA Tour event set an attendance record for the third straight day with an estimated crowd of 123,674.
European Tour: Rory McIlroy hit wedge into 5 feet for birdie on the 18th hole for a 2-under 70 and regained the outright lead in the Dubai Desert Classic.
The chief challenge for McIlroy came from an American -- but it wasn't Tiger Woods. Brooks Koepka shot a 65 and was a stroke behind McIlroy.
Woods hit only four fairways and had to rely on some key putts to salvage a 73. He was tied for 44th, eight shots out of the lead.
"I just didn't hit it close enough and didn't hit it well," Woods said. "Just one of those days."
McIlroy was at 11-under 133. He led by three shots after a birdie on 10 at Emirates Golf Club. But he drove into the waste area on the par-5 13th and par-4 16th holes, both leading to bogeys.
"It was nice to birdie the last and at least give myself a one-shot lead going into tomorrow," McIlroy said.
Danny Willett, who began his week by ski diving at 13,000 feet, had a 65 and shared third with Damien McGrane (70) and Julien Quesne (70) at 136.
LPGA Tour: Former Auburn All-American and tour player Danielle Downey died Thursday in a car accident. She was 33.
Downey lost control on Lee Road 57, the car overturned several times and she was ejected at about 10 p.m., police said.
She was in her second season as Auburn's director of golf operations. She filled in for coach Kim Evans during the 2012-13 season after Evans was diagnosed with cancer.
"I'm absolutely devastated," Evans said.