Back nine birdie run puts Jason Day on top at Quail Hollow

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jason Day sputtered at the start and hit his stride on the back nine for a 4-under 67 to build a two-shot lead going into the final round of the Wells Fargo Championship and a chance for his second victory this year.

Peter Uihlein, Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy all showed early on Saturday (Sunday, Manila time) that it was a softer, gentler Quail Hollow under an overcast sky. Uihlein had a 62, one off the course record. Mickelson had a 64, his lowest score this season.

Day did his part with five birdies on his last 10 holes and a daring shot on the 18th when he stood barefoot in the creek to play a shot onto the green. He was at 10-under 203.

Nick Watney had a 66 and was two behind.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @spinph