Rodgers moves into 3-shot lead at Valero Texas Open

Corey Conners tees off on the 18th hole during the first round of the Valero Texas Open golf tournament, Friday, March 31, 2023, in San Antonio. (AP Photo/Rodolfo Gonzalez )

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Patrick Rodgers took a step toward his first PGA Tour victory — and his first Masters appearance — on Friday, shooting a 5-under 67 to take a three-stroke lead midway through the second round of the weather-delayed Valero Texas Open.

Rodgers, who finished his opening-round 66 on Friday morning, birdied four of the final five holes in his second round at TPC San Antonio to post 11-under 133.

Corey Conners, the 2019 winner in San Antonio, was 8 under after a 72. Michael Thompson shot 68 and was another shot behind.

With the tournament in catch-up mode because of hours-long fog delays on Thursday morning, the afternoon half of the draw had no chance of finishing on Friday.

Rodgers’ tee shot on the 198-yard 16th stopped inside 8 feet, and he had another birdie inside 10 feet at 17. He reached the 593-yard, par-5 18th in two for his closing birdie.

The 30-year-old Rodgers starred in college at Stanford but is winless in 234 events since joining the PGA Tour in 2015.

Conners fell out of the lead with mistakes in the middle of his round. He four-putted his seventh hole, the par-3 16th, including three attempts within 4 feet. His tee shot on the 17th hooked into the brush, and he took an unplayable lie, leading to bogey.

Conners, winless since his Texas Open triumph four years ago, rebounded by shooting 2 under on his second nine, with birdies on both of the par 5s.

Conners is already in the field at Augusta National next week, but the final spot at the Masters awaits the winner in San Antonio if he’s not already eligible.


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