An Interview With: Morgan Pressel

RHONDA GLENN: Morgan, I know you said that being second, third or fourth did not matter to you, but it must mean something to you to be runner-up in the Women's Open, no?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Not yet. Not yet.

RHONDA GLENN: Tell us how you feel about how you played today and the results.

MORGAN PRESSEL: I had a good start, really good start the first few holes. Then I missed a short putt on 4 and then kind of got a little angry at myself for a few holes, which hurt me a little bit and but then I fought back to try and make pars, I figured par would be a pretty good score from there. I didn't play great today. I didn't strike the ball well by any means. I made some good par saves and then missed a couple of birdie putts that ultimately determined the end, so....

RHONDA GLENN: Putted very well had only 26 putts, that's pretty good.

MORGAN PRESSEL: That's because of lot of them were from off the green. (Laughs).

RHONDA GLENN: It was really cute, I hate to say that on the 18th hole when you saw Birdie sink the bunker shot and you put your hands up on top of your baseball cap. What went through your mind? What were you thinking?

MORGAN PRESSEL: That was unbelievable that she made that shot. I saw her in the bunker, oh, maybe par will win it. I saw her in the bunker. That's a tough hole.

Anytime you miss the green there you don't know what to expect. She hit a great shot. I was like, I can't believe this is happening to me.

RHONDA GLENN: Questions.

Q. First of all, congratulations on solid week.

MORGAN PRESSEL: Thank you.

Q. How deflating is it after you see that ball roll in and you have to hit the next shot and basically stick it?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I mean, I just knew what I had to do. I turned to my caddie, I said, "You think she might have hit it in the water then holed the bunker shot? Maybe I still have some life yet?"

Only way to get it close on 18 is to run it up because once you land it on the green or anywhere near it's going to go long, so I just got an unlucky bounce, kicked right instead of left like the fairway slopes, and tried to hole it. Didn't work too well.

Q. Does it make you feel any better or any worse to know that was the only birdie on that hole the whole day?

MORGAN PRESSEL: It was one of the only ones all week, I know that.

Q. Or all week.

MORGAN PRESSEL: I know, I mean, it came at the right time for her apparently, oh well that happens to you. I gave it away early.

Q. What is the closest you have ever come to having somebody beat you in this fashion and what is the closest you have ever come to beating somebody in a similar fashion?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Closest I have come to being beaten -- I don't remember. I am sure it's happened. I can't pinpoint one point in time. But last year at Polo I was playing the semis against Julieta Grenada. I was one down going into 18 and holed a bunker shot on the last hole to extend it and then won in the third extra hole.

Q. I was there when Annika grabbed you, kind of ran out and embraced you, what did she say to you?

MORGAN PRESSEL: She just said "Great job. You played real well and you are going to have many more times, so keep your head up."

Q. You are saying that on your approach to 18 what she did in front of you didn't really change the type of shot you were hitting in there then; is that correct?

MORGAN PRESSEL: No, I had to instead of playing for the center of the green, now I had to play for the front and hope to get it close because all you can do is hit and pray on that hole.

Q. Seemed like a lot of the amateurs the attention for the amateurs was Michelle Wie, but how do you feel about two amateurs sharing the runner-up status and Michelle I don't think has qualified for next year?

MORGAN PRESSEL: You know, Brittany is a good friend of mine and I have known her for a long time. I saw her name on the board. She played a great round of golf today. Anything par or even better is unbelievable. It was so tough out there today, especially late the wind blew a lot. But I mean we played well. Other people out there that can play, so.....

Q. I saw a lot of huffing and puffing out there, how did the altitude -- how did you feel about it?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I think I pretty much adjusted to the altitude. I just walking up hills I am like -- (breathing heavy).

RHONDA GLENN: Was that for nerves?

MORGAN PRESSEL: It wasn't nerves. Just walking up a steep hill, I get tired. It is a long week. Walking the course a lot, and I don't know it wasn't -- after you walk up a steep hill it is kind of -- walk away and take your breath and then come back and hit it, maybe it was the altitude, I don't know.

RHONDA GLENN: What did your grandfather say to you after you finished?

MORGAN PRESSEL: He just said "Great job, good playing," and you know, that was it. We didn't really have time to talk.

Q. You still had a shot at birdie with the third shot on 18. Characterize how hard that chip actually was.

MORGAN PRESSEL: It was actually harder when I got to the ball because it was actually in a good lie, which is when it's sitting up, then you are afraid that you are actually going to go under it because it was really sitting up high in the rough, which is the first time it happened to me all week.

I said to myself, you can't leave it short, you have got to at least put it on the green and give it a shot to -- I mean, I had an uphill slope to go, so it wasn't like I could roll it up, so, it was a tough shot, but -- I don't know.

Q. I am curious with all the pressure and last group, last round, U.S. Open, did you allow yourself to have fun out there?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Yeah, I guess, I always have fun, it's disappointing not to win, but I have a lot of years left and I mean, I was just grinding the whole time with her. It was an awesome walk going down the fairways, everyone is cheering for me. It was so much fun.

Q. You actually got a little bit of the emotion from the crowd, which seemed to build on you as the day went on.

MORGAN PRESSEL: Oh yeah, it was. They were all pulling for me. It was exciting, so.... that was fun.

Q. Is there one shot that you look back over the whole day where you are like, darn, if I just made that, is there one that you think about?

MORGAN PRESSEL: It would probably have to go back to the miss par-putt on 4, because that started a streak of three bogeys in a row. I just got a little quick in that area. That was where I gave it away. I could have made that putt on 16 that could have gone, if I also made a few other good par saves.

Q. Before you went out No. 1 gave some people trouble making bogeys, making doubles, what did you think of No. 1, the way it played and were you surprised that it jumped up and got some people?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, I mean, it's the last day of the Open, I actually surprisingly first day I thought I would be a lot more nervous than I was, but I was hardly nervous at all, which was nice. I was able to concentrate on my shot. But I mean, I am sure some people were nervous and, you know, it's a tough -- it is a short little hole, but it is a tough hole. It's a tight, tight drive and then if you leave yourself too far back then you got a long shot in a small green, and I was just perfect enough to -- I tried to play it so that it would bounce up to the back and I thought I made my putt, but I mean, you know, people -- like Karen on the first hole, I mean, I think that her second shot went way left. I think that was just all nerves personally. I don't think you'd see her hit a shot like that any normal day.

Q. When you leave here and go home how often do you think you will think about finish on Thursday?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I mean, it's more than just a nine-hole event. I have got a lot more holes to look back on, holes that I made bogey, that I made mistakes, but it's going to happen.

It's a tough golf course so you got to live with it. It's over.

Q. What does finishing second in the Women's Open do as far as swinging the balance between a college year and a professional career?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I have no idea. Haven't thought about that at all yet. I just finished. I haven't had time to think about it yet.

Q. What did you know about Birdie Kim before this week?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I just played in a few events with her, I knew she was a good player. She obviously played extremely well all week and hit some great shots, many could go down the stretch. So I mean, I never met her, never played with her, if that's what you are asking.

Q. Looking at your math score and SAT score obviously you are quite a perfectionist when it comes to school and everything. Sometimes is that tough for you out on a golf course because this is a game where you can do everything right and get a bad bounce is that part of where you get frustrating? What is it like being a perfectionist out there?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I was just want to hit every shot well and I think that I can. When you don't, I get a little frustrated, yeah, I am not afraid to show it, I guess, but I don't know, I just try and do my best on every shot and hope for the best.

RHONDA GLENN: I notice you have on a gold medal, Brittany has a silver medal, how did they decide who got the gold or are they sending Brittany a gold.

MORGAN PRESSEL: This was the Low Am then they had the runner-up for the Open, so she got the runner-up one and I walked up first they gave me this. Then they gave Brittany that one because they only had one of each.

RHONDA GLENN: I think you will also get one for runner-up and she will also get the gold medal.

MORGAN PRESSEL: Yeah.

Q. There's a lot of talk about the teens this week. How do you see yourself changing the game of golf in the next 10 to 15 years?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, as of right now I think we have brought a lot of attention to the Tour, a lot of attention to women's golf. If we can keep playing well and I think that it's just going to get younger and younger and it's just going to be tougher to win, I don't know if you will see anybody dominate like Annika. There's going to be so many players that are really, really good at a young age.

Q. I know yesterday you said a couple of times nobody remembers anybody finishing second. Do you still buy that and do you think that in a couple of days you will be able to look back on this with any kind of positive feeling?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I truly don't know. It's positive I finished second in the Open, but I mean it was the fact that I was just so close, so.....

If a couple of bounces would have gone my way, it would have been mine, but it's not.

Q. If you ever had that sense was there any point on the back nine when had you a sense that this was yours? Was there a certain putt, maybe the nice par on 15 for example?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, the par on 15 kept me in, and I was walking up 16 and I saw that -- as I was walking to the green I saw that she had bogeyed that hole and I had a birdie putt that I thought was right in the hole and just that much short (indicating an inch) Then I would have taken the lead by one that -- I thought it would have been mine if I would have made that putt.

Q. The way you were swinging the club especially off the tee off 14, 16, 18 you were hitting that rhythm --

MORGAN PRESSEL: My tee balls was okay today. Nothing was real special. I must have been really pumped up on 17 after what happened on 16 because I hit that 3-wood I think like 280. It was huge. The camera guy looks at me, he goes wow, you hit that far. I was like a little pumped up, I know.

Yeah, I mean I was just trying to stay calm, not get ahead of myself and if I have started -- sometimes I walk really fast when I get really into it, when I grind, sometimes I try to slow down and walk a little slower and take a few deep breaths.

Q. As much golf as you have played and good battles you have been in, have you had anything happen to you like that that's even remotely close, somebody holing a long birdie putt on you or doing something goofy like that?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I am thinking, was it with Jane Park?

She made a few long ones at the end, what was it 16, and 17 that just -- I mean, I don't know. Has that ever happened? I don't remember. I am sure it has.

RHONDA GLENN: You did it?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I did.

RHONDA GLENN: It wasn't the Women's Open.

RHONDA GLENN: Are you referring to Jane Park in the Women's Amateur last year?

MORGAN PRESSEL: No, at the girls junior. But Julieta Grenada last year at Polo last year I holed a bunker shot on 18 when I was one down.

RHONDA GLENN: Let's do the card.

No. 2 what club did you hit to the second green? How long was your putt?

MORGAN PRESSEL: I hit 7-iron and it was about 30 feet.

RHONDA GLENN: The bogeys on 4, 5, 6.

MORGAN PRESSEL: On 4, I just got a little unlucky, went through the green and chipped to about three feet, missed it.

5, I took way too much off a lob wedge and banged -- was on the fringe then banged my first putt on the back fringe and then three-putt. Then again it probably only counted as a one putt (laughs).

RHONDA GLENN: Yes, that's true. No. 6.

MORGAN PRESSEL: 6, at that point Karen and I were tied and she hit the shot a little left and it got a bad kick down the slope. I was like center of the green, but I tried to choke up on a 6-iron and sometimes I get a little, I don't know, I just hook -- pull it a little bit too much. It went down the hill, too.

RHONDA GLENN: Didn't make putt.

MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, I was 50 feet.

RHONDA GLENN: No. 13.

MORGAN PRESSEL: I hit a little hook of a drive and it was just like the fringe -- first cut, went this way around the bunker. My ball was like right here between the rough and the first cut and I thought I had the perfect club with a lob wedge if I would have hit it good. I hit it really well. I guess it's just coming through maybe, it caught a little bit of grass and held it up just that much, hit the bunker, came in, I had about 7-foot putt. Thought I was right in the hole, but not today.

RHONDA GLENN: For the record, on No. 18 what club did you choose for your second shot? Briefly go through that.

MORGAN PRESSEL: I chose a 5-iron and I don't hit real high shots, so I thought that if I landed it somewhere around the front edge of the green it would be perfect and it would stop right by the hole. Got a little unlucky bounce, maybe hit a little skinny.

RHONDA GLENN: Chipped on and two-putted.

MORGAN PRESSEL: Yes.

Q. How does your thinking change as you are walking towards your ball at 18, kind of visualizing or planning a shot in your mind, and then seeing what happened above? How does that change your approach on that shot? That's got to be a jolt --

MORGAN PRESSEL: Just changes my mindset to, okay, you just make par and par is a good score, to how you are forced to make birdie and that was it.

Q. Is that a difficult adjustment on that hole especially?

MORGAN PRESSEL: On that hole, on any hole out here, actually you have to force yourself to make a birdie, you know, the pins were tucked today and usually over slopes and things like that, but especially on that hole when you got a long shot up a steep hill and that green has been so firm all week, so to force yourself have to hit it on the front of that green is pretty tough.

Q. If you get back to the airport and that lady is there at the baggage claim suggested that the tournament was over and that Annika had won, do you hope to see her at all?

MORGAN PRESSEL: (Laughs) I forgot about that actually. She said that to me. I said, "What are you saying? I am going to win." She looked at me like I was crazy. But I don't know if I will see her again, but that was fun knee. (Laughs) I forgot about that.

End of FastScripts.


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