SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Rory McIlroy didn’t anticipate an encounter with the native plant life when he signed up for the Texas Open.
Despite just such a happening on Friday, the world’s No. 2 golfer matched the low round of the day with a 5-under par 67 and moved within three shots of leader Billy Horschel, continuing his last-minute preparations for next week’s Masters.
McIlroy, who decided to play in the tournament late last week, had seven birdies — including his final three holes — and overcame a bogey on No. 9 after driving into the rough and catching his left shin on a nearby cactus.
The misstep dropped McIlroy to 1 under, but he rebounded with key putts on the final three holes for birdies and pulled well within reach of the leaders entering the weekend.
“It was a good way to finish,” McIlroy said. “It will definitely make dinner taste a little nicer tonight and give me a couple of more hours in bed tomorrow morning.”
The 23-year-old two-time major winner is three shots back of Horschel.