Tracker: Bettencourt, Tomasulo lead at Texas Open

Padraig Harrington

Padraig Harrington

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Zurich Classic of New Orleans

Avondale, LA - TPC Louisiana

3:06:15 AM ET. 04/25/2014




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On a day that started with stars Rory McIlroy, Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth, it was a pair of unheralded players that held the lead after 18 holes at the Valero Texas Open.

Both playing in the afternoon wave, Matt Bettencourt and Peter Tomasulo fired 5-under 67s to lead four others by one shot in San Antonio.

Bettencourt made the tournament as an alternate. The former Reno-Tahoe Open winner needed only 25 putts, joining Tomasulo in holding off a group of four players — including three-time major winner Padraig Harrington — at 4 under.

Harrington and Billy Horschel shared the lead following the morning tee times, battling chilly and windy conditions. They were joined by Bryce Molder and Harris English at 4 under in the afternoon.

McIlroy opened with an even-par 72, while Kuchar finished at 2-over 74. Spieth held the lead early, but a triple-bogey sent him to a 1-under 71.

See how it all unfolded on Thursday:

• • •

Update No. 30: 6:58 p.m. EDT

Matt Bettencourt is in the clubhouse at 5 under, one ahead of the field. Bryce Molder has moved into a three-way tie for second place at 4 under with a birdie at No. 7 (his 16th hole of the day).

Jim Furyk is in the clubhouse two shots back after a birdie at par-3 16th gave him his first birdie since the third hole.

• • •

Update No. 29: 6:01 p.m. EDT

Matt Bettencourt takes the outright lead with an 8-footer at No. 17 to get to 5 under. He is currently a shot clear of Padraig Harrington and Billy Horschel, who both played in the morning wave.

• • •

Update No. 28: 4:49 p.m. EDT

There are five players on the course edging closer to the lead, which is still at 4 under. Nicholas Thompson (thru 11), Daniel Summerhays (thru 11), Matt Bettencourt (thru 12), Brian Gay (thru 9) and Ben Kohles (thru 5) are all at 3 under.

• • •

Update No. 27: 4:24 p.m. EDT

Kevin Chappell, who played well last Sunday at the Houston Open, heads to the front nine after going 2 under on his opening nine holes. Chappell has missed six cuts in nine events in 2013, but does have a T-6 (Houston) and T-8 (Humana Challenge) in the three he made.

• • •

Update No. 26: 3:47 p.m. EDT

Jim Furyk starts with three birdies and is 3 under through six holes, just one shot off the lead held by Billy Horschel and Padraig Harrington. Furyk has made all six of his cuts this season, with a T-7 in Tampa his best finish of 2013.

• • •

Update No. 25: 3:35 p.m. EDT

Maybe Sang Moon Bae has been listening to the latest Golf Boys video a bit too much, as his play on Thursday looked like he was taking a "vacay on Sang Moon Bae." The Korean fired an 11-over 83 and is currently dead last in the field.

• • •

Update No. 24: 2:59 p.m. EDT

The afternoon groups are starting to tee off and among those playing well early in their afternoon rounds are Daniel Summerhays, D.J. Trahan and Matt Bettencourt, who are all 2 under at the moment.

• • •

Update No. 23: 2:50 p.m. EDT

Billy Horschel closed with two birdies in his final three holes, including one at No. 9, to finish with a 4-under 68. He's tied for the clubhouse lead with Padraig Harrington.

• • •

Update No. 22: 2:37 p.m. EDT

Jim Furyk has just one top 10 this season (T-7 at Tampa Bay), but he's made all six cuts and has four other finishes of T-35 or better. Not great, but not horrible, either. Through two holes today, Furyk is 2 under thanks to birdies at Nos. 1-2.

• • •

Update No. 21: 2:14 p.m. EDT

Padraig Harrington bogeys his final hole of the day, No. 18, to finish at 4-under 68. He's still got the solo lead, though.

• • •

Update No. 20: 2 p.m. EDT

Rory McIlroy is in the clubhouse with an even-par 72. Four birdies and four bogeys on the day for Rory, who was 2 under through eight holes. His playing competitors, Jordan Spieth and Matt Kuchar, shot 71 and 74, respectively.

• • •

Update No. 19: 1:53 p.m. EDT

Padraig Harrington has the solo lead now at 5 under. He's through 17 holes. Meanwhile, Jordan Spieth has dropped back to 1 under thanks to a triple bogey at the par-5 eighth, his penultimate hole.

• • •

Update No. 18: 1:37 p.m. EDT

Fresh off the best finish of his Tour career (a T-2 in Houston), Billy Horschel is playing well again this week. He's 3 under through 14 holes. Horschel has made 20 straight cuts on Tour.

• • •

Update No. 17: 1:30 p.m. EDT

Remember when we told you how Roberto Castro was among an early tie for the lead at 1 under? Well, Castro, who was 1 under through two holes, went 8 over in his final 16 holes to wrap up a 7-under 79.

• • •

Update No. 16: 1:24 p.m. EDT

Marcel Siem, who won last week on the European Tour but missed out on a spot in the Masters after ending up No. 51 in the Official World Golf Ranking, is 1 over through nine holes today. He can still qualify for Augusta with a win here in San Antonio.

• • •

Update No. 15: 1:10 p.m. EDT

Rory McIlroy birdies Nos. 4-5 to move to 1 under. Jordan Spieth still leads at 4 under, although it is Padraig Harrington that has joined him in a tie for the top spot. Matt Kuchar, though, has dropped back to 2 over.

• • •

Update No. 15: 12:45 p.m. EDT

David Duval hasn't had a lot of success recently – he's made just 12 cuts in 44 starts the past three seasons – but he's made four cuts in this event dating to 2009. That streak might end this year, as Duval is 6 over through 16 holes.

• • •

Update No. 14: 12:34 p.m. EDT

Rory McIlroy was 2 under through his first eight holes. He's 3 over since, and is 1 over with five holes to play. Matt Kuchar is 1 over, as well, thanks to a recent birdie at the par-4 fourth hole.

• • •

Update No. 13: 12:21 p.m. EDT

Not including World Golf Championships, Padraig Harrington has missed two of three cuts on Tour. His other finish? A T-9 at the Phoenix Open. He's hoping for similar success to the latter this week, and he's off to a good start. Harrington is 3 under through 11 holes, a shot back of the lead.

• • •

Update No. 12: 12:09 p.m. EDT

Three birdies in a row have Jordan Spieth tied for the lead with Jason Gore at 4 under. Spieth last two birdies have come at the par-5 second and par-3 third holes. Meanwhile, Matt Kuchar is still at even par while Rory McIlroy has fallen back to 1 over.

• • •

Update No. 11: 11:41 a.m. EDT

A second straight bogey for Rory McIlroy, this one at No. 1, drops him back to even par, where he is joined by Matt Kuchar. Jordan Spieth birdied the hole to move back to 2 under. He trails Lee Janzen, Jason Gore, Robert Karlsson and Jimmy Walker, who all lead at 3 under.

• • •

Update No. 10: 11:18 a.m. EDT

Just when you thought it might be his day, Rory McIlroy bogeys the par-5 18th to fall back to 1 under.

• • •

Update No. 9: 11:10 a.m. EDT

Justin Leonard has won this event three times, although two of those were on a different course. But the Texas alum is leading early at 3 under. He's through eight holes after starting on No. 10.

• • •

Update No. 8: 10:56 a.m. EDT

Guess who is tied for the lead at 2 under? That's right, Rory McIlroy. Rory birdied the par-4 17th for his second birdie of the day. The late decision to play this event looks to be paying off so far for Rory. Jordan Spieth also birdied the hole to get back to 1 under. Matt Kuchar remains at even par.

• • •

Update No. 7: 10:50 a.m. EDT

Suddenly Rory McIlroy has the best score in his group so far at 1 under. Kuchar and Spieth each bogeyed the par-3 16th to drop to even par. For Spieth, it was his second straight bogey after being at 2 under earlier in his round.

• • •

Update No. 6: 10:35 a.m. EDT

A bogey at No. 15 drops Jordan Spieth back to 1 under. He trails five players at 2 under (Jason Gore, Jimmy Walker, Robert Karlsson, Brandt Jobe and Ryan Palmer). Three of those players (Jobe, Karlsson and Walker) have never won on Tour.

• • •

Update No. 5: 10:18 a.m. EDT

The par-5 14th has been kind to players early, especially our featured group. Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy and Matt Kuchar all birdied the hole. Spieth moves into a tie for the lead at 2 under while McIlroy and Kuchar both move to 1 under after their first birdies of the day.

• • •

Update No. 4: 9:55 a.m. EDT

Birdies at Nos. 1-2 have moved Martin Laird into a tie for the lead with Jason Gore at 2 under. Gore is through six holes.

• • •

Update No. 3: 9:37 a.m. EDT

Jordan Spieth moves to 1 under with a birdie at the par-4 12th. Rory McIlroy and Matt Kuchar each made par to remain at even.

• • •

Update No. 2: 9:32 a.m. EDT

It's been a rough start for Cameron Tringale, who just double-bogeyed the par-3 13th to drop to 2 over through four holes. On the other hand, it's been a good start to the season for Tringale, who has made of eight cuts in 10 starts and already has a third-place finish this year (Tampa Bay).

• • •

Update No. 1: 9:06 a.m. EDT

Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Matt Kuchar all par their opening hole, the par-4 10th. The lead is just 1 under early as a handful of players find themselves tied for the top spot, including Jimmy Walker and Roberto Castro.

• • •

Pre-tournament coverage

TEE TIMES: Here are the first- and second-round tee times and pairings for the Valero Texas Open at TPC San Antonio. Story.

PREDICTIONS: With the likes of Rory McIlroy and Ian Poulter in the Valero Texas Open field, it is Fredrik Jacobson and Matt Kuchar that receive love from our panel. Story.

MASTERS NOTES: Qualifying year after year has proven difficult for many, as of what could be termed “serious” contenders for this year's Masters, only 17 of them teed it up at Augusta National in 2003. Story.

TOUR NOTES: The Dave Williams Golf Academy is referred to as "The Gateway to Success" - and it holds true, paying tribute to a coach who won the NCAA Championship 16 times. Story.

AMERICAN DOMINANCE: Jonas Blixt of Sweden is becoming a footnote in history — the last foreign-born player to win on the PGA Tour. Story.

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