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Mickelson Alone Atop the Leaderboard After Day 3 at Merion

Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images(ARDMORE, Pa.) -- Phil Mickelson is close to breaking the curse.

The man referred to as "Lefty" is currently leading the U.S. Open by one-stroke following three rounds of play, after shooting a 1-under 69 on Saturday, at Merion Golf Club.

Mickelson is looking for his first U.S. Open victory after having been runner-up a record five times at the event.

"I love being in the thick of it," Mickelson said. "I've had opportunities in years past and it has been so fun, even though it's been heartbreaking to come so close a number of times and let it slide. But I feel better equipped than I ever felt heading into a final round of a U.S. Open. My ball striking is better than it's ever been. My putting has been better than it has been in years, and I feel very comfortable on this golf course, I love it."

Mickelson finished Saturday 1-under for the tournament, the only golfer under par. Steve Sticker, Hunter Mahan and Charl Shwartzel are all one stroke behind at even-par.

Tiger Woods shot a 6-over 76, and is currently 9-over for the tournament.

The final pairing Sunday will consist of Mickelson and Mahan. They are scheduled to tee off at 3:20 p.m. Eastern.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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