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U.S. Open Thursday Updates

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Members of Congressional Country Club watch practice rounds from the clubhouse Wednesday.
Matt Bush
Members of Congressional Country Club watch practice rounds from the clubhouse Wednesday.

Update at 6:30 p.m.: Just as many eyes are focused on the sky as they are on the golf here, but so far the rain has held off as the first round nears its conclusion. Rory McIlroy is putting together the round of the day. He's had six birdies and no bogeys, good enough for six under par and a three shot lead over Y.E. Yang and Charl Schwartzel.

Six other golfers are at two under. During the last major, the Masters in April, McIlroy blew a four-shot lead during the final round, but he's showing no ill effects from the performance. Phil Mickelson continues to struggle, he's three over par for the day.

Update at 4:30 p.m.: Two players, with the same name, have joined South Korean Y.E. Yang for the lead. Rory and Rory, whose last names are Sabbatini and McIlroy, are still on the course but are at three under par, which ties them for first place with Yang, who finished his round Thursday morning. Yang won the 2009 PGA Championship, and through an interpreter, he answered whether that experience will help him this weekend.

"In Korea, they say it takes a winner to recognize winner. So, definitely it will help," he says.

Fan and sentimental favorite Phil Mickelson has struggled mightily, and it stared right from the beginning. He put his first shot of the day at the par-three 10th into the pond. He's currently two over for the day.

Update at 3 p.m.: South Korean Y.E. Yang is in the clubhouse with the lead. Yang shot a three-under round of 68 to gran the lead. Italian Francesco Molinari has tied Yang after birdieing three of the first four holes.

Two others are tied for second one shot back, while a slew of golfers sit at one under.

Phil Mickelson, a fan and sentimental favorite at this tournament, had a rough start. His first shot of the day at the par-three 10th found the water, and went on to double bogey the hole. But he got one shot back by birdieing the 12th.

Update at 2 p.m.: The lone local golfer at this year's U.S. Open has finished his first round. College Park native Fred Funk finished with a four over 75, as he birdied just one hole to go with three bogeys and one double bogey. The 55-year-old is the oldest player at this year's tournament, and he admits he is not a particularly long hitter of the tee. And Funk says that caught up with him today.

"It's a long hombre for me. Number 11 I couldn't reach. I laid up on that one. So that played like a par five for me. A lot of long holes, a lot of tough stuff for me. But I knew that coming in," he says.

Funk figures he must shoot two over for Friday's second round to make the cut for the weekend.

Update at 12:00 a.m.: Ryan Palmer is the leader at three under par with two players right behind him at two under, Ryan Johan Edfors and Jeff Overton. There's a slew of players at one under, including defending U.S. Open champion Graham McDowel.

Update at 11:00 a.m.: A steady drizzle greeted fans and players as play got underway at 7 a.m., but after about an hour it went away. Golfers no doubt welcomed the rain, as it slows down the greens that are made to be lightning quick for golf's second major.

Four players are currently tied for the lead, including defending British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen. There were plenty of big cheers for College Park native Fred Funk as he teed off. At 55, he's the oldest player at the tournament. Currently, he's four over par.

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