Snedeker in control as Mickelson drops back

Brandt Snedeker is on track for victory at the Safeway Open, holding a three-shot lead after the third round.

American Brandt Snedeker   -  Getty Images

Brandt Snedeker remains in control of the Safeway Open, retaining a three-stroke lead as Phil Mickelson fell out of contention on Saturday.

Snedeker produced another strong round in Napa, California, shooting a three-under 69.

The American moved into 16 under at the opening event of the 2018-19 PGA Tour season, with Kevin Tway (68) in outright second.

South Korean 20-year-old Im Sung-jae (69) is at 12 under, a shot ahead of Bill Haas (67).

A group of four players – Sam Ryder (67), Aaron Baddeley (69), Chase Wright (70) and Adam Schenk (70) – are six shots off the pace in a tie for fifth.

Mickelson was in contention, but the five-time major champion carded a two-over 74 in the third round to fall back into a tie for 15th.

Two-time defending champion Brendan Steele is back in a tie for 35th at six under.