March 28, 2014
By Sean Martin, PGATOUR.COM
- PGA TOUR rookie Andrew Loupe is 4 under par through 11 holes and tied for the Valero Texas Open lead. (Petersen/Getty)
SAN ANTONIO -- Three players are tied for the lead at the suspended Valero Texas Open. Thursday's play was delayed 2 1/2 hours by fog, leaving much of the afternoon wave with work to resume Friday morning. Pat Perez and Danny Lee shot 68 in the morning round, while rookie Andrew Loupe was 4 under through 11 holes. Play will resume at 8 a.m. Friday.
Loupe made six birdies and two bogeys in his 11 holes. The long hitter from LSU missed the first five cuts of the season, but has posted consecutive top-30 finishes. He tied for 27th at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am after a first-round 63 and finished 12th at the Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com.
Lee is riding high after a good finish in Puerto Rico of his own. He finished a career-best second behind Chesson Hadley. Lee birdied four of his final five holes Thursday.
“Ever since I finished second at Puerto Rico, everything changed a little bit for me," said Lee, the 2008 U.S. Amateur champion. "I was starting to act more positive. I was believing in every shot I hit and was believing in my game. ... I'm really believing in myself and I know I can do this.”
Perez is working with instructor Joe Mayo, and has credited their work for his good play of late. Perez is No. 32 in the FedExCup after posting three top-10s, highlighted by a runner-up finish at the Farmers Insurance Open, in 12 starts this season. He’s missed just one cut.
“I’ve got a pretty good understanding of what my swing is doing and what the ball is doing,” Perez said. “I feel as confident as I ever have with my ball striking and where the ball is going to go and if I can make a couple putts, I feel like I can shoot a pretty good score.”
Hadley is among a large group of players at 3 under par. Cameron Beckman, playing this week on a sponsor exemption, is part of that group, as is Hadley.