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SAN ANTONIO – Kevin Chappell birdied three of his final five holes and took a step closer to his first PGA Tour victory with a 1-under 71 on Saturday, giving him a one-stroke lead after three rounds of the Valero Texas Open.
Chappell is 8-under through 54 holes. He's ahead of first-round leader Branden Grace, who rallied with 2-under 70, and John Huh. After an eagle-birdie finish, Huh shot 71.
Ryan Palmer, a West Texas native who cut through winds as strong as 25 mph, had the round of the day with 4-under 68. He's joined at 6-under by second round co-leaders Bud Cauley (74) and Tony Finau (74), Sweden's Carl Pettersson (71), 2013 Texas Open champ Martin Laird (71), Kevin Tway (72) and Australian Cameron Smith (73).
Chappell tied for seventh with Rory McIlroy at the Masters this month, and he got his late charge going Saturday after leaving an eagle putt short at the par-5 14th. He tapped in to gain a stroke, and he made good two holes later with a 12-foot birdie. He chipped to two feet on the downwind, 318-yard 17th and had another tap-in birdie.