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A long day and the lead for Lefty at US Open

Friday - 6/14/2013, 3:03am  ET

Phil Mickelson tips his hat on the 12th green during the first round of the U.S. Open golf tournament at Merion Golf Club, Thursday, June 13, 2013, in Ardmore, Pa. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

DOUG FERGUSON
AP Golf Writer

ARDMORE, Pa. (AP) -- Even for Phil Mickelson, his path to the top of the leaderboard Thursday in the U.S. Open was unconventional.

He traveled about 2,400 miles in the air and 7,000 yards on the ground. He took a short nap on his private jet from San Diego and another one during a rain delay when he found a secluded corner of the library room in the Merion clubhouse. He carried five wedges but no driver.

Some 17 hours later, Mickelson had a 3-under 67 to match his best opening round in the U.S. Open.

Mickelson returned from his daughter's eighth-grade graduation about 3
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