Eric Axley used a three-birdie finish to complete a 7-under 63 on Saturday at the Texas Open, taking a four-shot lead heading into the final round.
updated: February 25, 2007 11:36 IST
San Antonio:Eric Axley used a three-birdie finish to complete a 7-under 63 on Saturday at the Texas Open, taking a four-shot lead heading into the final round. Axley, a left-hander with a half backswing pre-shot routine that's similar to the left-handed 2003 Masters champion Mike Weir, is 16 under through 54 holes. Axley is pursuing his first US PGA Tour victory. He's won once on the American developmental Nationwide Tour, but his best finishes in two full seasons on the full men's tour are a pair of ties for 24th place. Another bogey-free round might do it. The 32-year-old Axley has gone 40 holes without a bogey. He started the tournament Thursday with bogeys on three of his first 14 holes. He leads a group of three players including 2005 Byron Nelson Championship winner Ted Purdy, who shot 64 on Saturday. The others at 12 under are Frank Lickliter II (65) and 2004 Ryder Cup participant Chris Riley (64). Dean Wilson is five shots back after a 4-under 66. First round co-leader Justin Rose is tied for sixth. After a 1-over 71 in the second round dropped him to four shots behind Axley and second-round co-leader D.A. Points, Rose had consecutive birdies on holes 4 and 5 and 14-16 for a 65 on Saturday and a three-round total of 10-under 200. He's tied for sixth with Charley Hoffman. Points carded only one birdie all day and fell nine shots behind Axley with a 2-over 72. Axley jumped right to the lead Saturday with a birdie at No. 1, sinking an 18-foot putt on the par-5 hole. And he finished strong with those three birdies, none of which was more than 8 feet. (AP)