Texas kept up the pace as the execution leader in the United States by putting Keith Clay to death by lethal injection. The Austin American-Statesman said that Clay, 35, killed a convenience store clerk near Houston in 1994. The newspaper said that this year, Texas may exceed its record 40 lethal injections in 2000. Another is scheduled for next week and three more in April. Texas accounts for more than one third of the 839 executions in the United States since 1976 when the Supreme Court allowed the death penalty to resume after a series of challenges. Virginia is a distant second with 87.