REALTED CONTENT: Valero Texas Open first-round notes
SAN ANTONIO – Andrew Loupe is known for his long tee shots. His shortest club was his best one in his first-round 67 at the Valero Texas Open, though. He was the leader when the suspended first round was completed Friday morning, holding a one-shot lead over Danny Lee and Pat Perez.
Loupe led the field in strokes gained-putting in the Valero Texas Open’s first round, gaining 4.539 on the field with his flatstick; he needed just 24 putts. He also averaged 311.0 yards per tee shot in the first round.
“I rolled it nice,” he said, “but I thought I rolled it great and thought I drove it pretty solid. I’m just ready to do it again.”
He had less than an hour to prepare for his second round.
Loupe played 11 holes Thursday, making six birdies and two bogeys, before play was suspended due to darkness. He resumed his round on his 12th hole Friday morning, making a birdie and six pars. He had approximately an hour to prepare for his second round.
This is Loupe’s eighth start of his rookie season and second time holding the first-round lead. He opened the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am with a 63.
Loupe missed his first five cuts of his rookie season, playing those 11 rounds in 13 over par and shooting just one score in the 60s. He made the cut in his next two starts, though, finishing 27th at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and 12th at the Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com. He is 170th in the FedExCup.
Four of his past nine rounds have been in the 60s, including that opening 63 at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and a 65-69 finish to his last start, the Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com.
Loupe, a 2011 All-American at LSU, is playing his first PGA TOUR season after sneaking through the Web.com Tour Finals. He earned his card by making a mandatory 6-foot putt on the Web.com Tour Championship’s final hole. Loupe’s sixth-place finish at the season finale came after missing the cut in the first three Web.com Tour Finals events.
Andrew Loupe interview after Round 1 of Valero