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July 16, 2014
MODERATOR:Â It is my pleasure to welcome in two of our biggest stars on the LPGA Tour ‑ I want to thank both of you for coming in today ‑ Stacy Lewis and Paula Creamer, two of probably the fan favorites this week.
Stacy yesterday you said, This week I'm from Toledo.Â You're trying to make it I think a Stacy Lewis sweep.Â You own in Texas, Arkansas, and now you're trying to go here as your third hometown event.Â Trying to make it three for three.Â Talk about coming back here and having your hometown event once again.
STACY LEWIS:Â Yeah, well, it's always fun coming back here just for me.Â Just having the family connection, we have big family dinners on the weekends stuff.Â So just to be able to hang out and to have that time to relax is always nice.
As soon as I won in Arkansas I was getting messages from all the Marathon people.Â Now you need to come win in Toledo, too, so no pressure.Â It would be awesome to win here.Â I mean, I've just come in here so many years, playing as an amateur, coming here as a kid, this place and this tournament means a lot to me.
MODERATOR:Â Paula, last year right down to the wire.Â Beatriz even joked about it yesterday and said everybody was rooting for Paula.Â You're beloved here.Â You're a champ here.Â Talk about last year.
PAULA CREAMER:Â Yeah, I love this golf course.Â Shot 60 here.Â Have a lot of really good memories.Â Just fits my game.Â I think the people are great.Â It's a Wednesday and there are a bunch of people out there watching.
It's a tournament that is run through the community.Â It is great to come out and have a lot of fans.Â I had ties with Owens Corning for quite a while.Â Just coming back to kind of the Pink Panther area is great.Â You see so many kids come out and watch, especially on the weekends.
The golf course is probably if the best shape I've seen it.Â The rough is thick, the greens are pretty bouncy, and it's going to be a good test of golf.
It's playing a lot longer than it has in the past.
MODERATOR:Â The storyline all the season has been the Americans.Â Had a little bit of a shocker last week, and Mo would be the first one to say.Â Talk about that momentum and going into next week, huge event for the LPGA Tour.Â Been a long time coming with the International Crown.Â Both of you representing Team USA.
How big is it for you guys playing so well successfully taking that momentum into next week.
STACY LEWIS:Â Well, it's great when you see your friends doing well, especially Americans.Â For so long we were constantly asked, Where you guys?Â Where you guys?Â We're here and we're doing great.Â We're doing it in a good way, too.
I think everybody has been playing such good golf.Â Going into next week is exciting.Â We've already been talking about it and figuring out pairings and things.
It's fun whenever you get those opportunities, especially when we are playing good golf.Â It's a good golf course at Caves Valley.Â That's kind of right up all our alleys right there, too.
I think the fact that the momentum keeps going and we want the Americans to keep winning, which is good when you see them on the board.Â Everybody starts playing better.
MODERATOR:Â No. 1 on the caddie bid; you have the No. 1 ranking.Â You guys are the No. 1 ranked team going into it.Â I hate the word pressure.Â It's overused.Â But you have the target on your back.Â Are you using that as inspiration or trying ignore it?
STACY LEWIS:Â I mean, we announced the teams at Kraft for the International Crown.Â I was pretty excited that we took that No. 1 ranking back.Â I think everybody on the team is excited as well.Â Because I think that's where we think we should be.
So I think we're all going to enjoy the pressure.Â There is always pressure playing a team event at home.Â Everybody wants you to play well.Â But I think that's where we want to be.Â Everybody is playing great golf.Â When you see your friends do well and be successful and see what goes into making that happen, it makes you work harder.
I think that's what you're seeing.Â Lexi is learning how to win.Â She's learning how to get in contention and stay there.
Same with Michelle.
Paula has had kind of a good year coming back from some stuff.
So it's great to see.Â I like seeing the young kids be successful and to win.Â They're talented.Â I've been saying if for two, three years they're talented enough.Â It's just nice to see to happening.
Q.Â Paula, all the players keep saying how unique of an experience it is here.Â The community really supports the LPGA.Â How do you notice that year in, year out?
PAULA CREAMER:Â Just by the fans.Â I have people that have come out, especially little girls that have come out in the last five, six years and aren't so little anymore.Â They're 13, 14 years old.Â It's really neat to see.
But every day we have a lot people that come out.Â This is a great golf course for spectators, too.Â We're all pretty much bunched around together.Â It's a good course to walk.Â The weather is always very nice.Â Last couple years it's been pretty hot.
I think as players we've always supported this event.Â It's been around for so long.Â There is no reason why you would skip it.Â It's a great tournament, it's a great venue, and a lot of fun things happen out on the golf course.Â I think it's fun for spectators to watch.
Q.Â You've had success here.Â Why?Â Does the course fit your game?
PAULA CREAMER:Â You have to hit the ball in the fairway.Â You get your putter rolling out here you can make a lot of birdies.
The greens are pretty specific of where you need to be.Â I think the golf course, you know, you have to take advantage of some of the par‑5s.Â The par‑3s you hit some good irons into them.
I think the golf course is playing the hardest it is this year, and it's still a good test of golf.Â You can still make a lot of birdies.Â I don't know.Â I feel comfortable.Â I feel very confident out here.
Shot some low numbers.Â Being in contention always helps, too.
Q.Â Stacy, this being like a hometown tournament for you, do you feel any pressure to perform?Â I know you like being in front of family and friends, but do you feel any pressure?
STACY LEWIS:Â Yeah, I mean, there is always pressure.Â I don't know if it's a good or bad thing, but I have a few hometown events.Â I've been able to learn over the years how to handle that pressure.Â You can feel it with the crowd and with the fans.Â They want you to do well and they want you to win.
It's hard, because you put a lot of pressure on yourself.Â You start going for shots you shouldn't or hitting a putt five, six feet by.Â You start doing things differently.
So I've really kind of learned from that, learned how to stay in the zone, stay in my routine and what I can control.Â Figured that out in Texas and Arkansas.Â Hopefully I figure it out here, too.
PAULA CREAMER:Â I need more hometown tournaments.Â Four of them.Â Look at you.Â (Laughter.)
Q.Â It's always very warm here.Â Do you feel like the weather is going to change the course at all as far as speed or anything?
STACY LEWIS:Â I think the golf course is drier than in past years.Â Hopefully we don't get any rain today because I think it's great.Â Definitely playing a little longer as Paula said.
I think that's just because it's cooler.Â The ball isn't quite flying as far and just having some longer shots into holes.Â I think we're all kind of welcoming the cooler weather.
We came from the British, but those hundred degree days are not fun for us.Â It's good.Â It's great for the fans.Â Get more people out here.Â I think it's going to be a good week.
Q.Â How does fitness play an important part in your game?
PAULA CREAMER:Â In mine it's huge.Â You know, I have new training for the last two year.Â His name is Jon Burke.Â I do a lot of MMA boxing, a lot of my own body weight.Â I used to lift a lot and I totally changed that.Â After I had surgery I realized I needed to make certain things in my body a little bit stronger.Â Working out isn't just to be physically fit out here.Â It's to prevent injuries as well.
It was a long year.Â We travel a lot.Â A lot of airplanes.Â Just being healthy in general is important.Â This is my tenth year out on tour.Â From when I first came out and now, it's a huge‑‑ you just can see.Â You know, your body does get tired over time.Â We're constantly on the go, not only playing and practicing, but with media and partners and sponsors.Â You still have to stay as strong as you were in January in November.
Q.Â So it's an all‑year‑round program for you?
PAULA CREAMER:Â For me it's been probably the best thing that's happened to me is learning about your body, about what it needs.Â It's like you practice for certain reasons, for your golf swing.Â If you don't feel your body the proper way you're not going to be able to do that.
Stacy works out just as much.Â Different types of workouts, but it's all how your body relates to it.
Q.Â For both of you, you recognize, notice, enjoy 14 as a party hole with the caddie race?
PAULA CREAMER:Â Always afraid my caddie is going to go down on me.Â Just take it easy.Â Bag is bigger than he is.Â I'm like, Just take it easy.Â Run down there.Â A little competitive of course.
I turn around.Â I can't watch.Â It's a lot of fun.Â That's the way it should be.Â I wish golf, we could have parties out there and have a song walking on the first tee.Â That would be awesome.Â But it is nice to have that.Â The fans really get going in that section.
STACY LEWIS:Â Yeah, I like it, too.Â It's a cool concept.Â We have it at some other events on the tour.Â The hardest part about 14 is the hole is so long.Â Everybody expects you to hit a 4‑iron to five feet, which is just not going to happen.
Maybe if we were hitting some shorter clubs in there they would see some more birdies.Â They still seem to have fun with it no matter what.Â The caddies have gotten into it over the years.Â I don't think my caddie will be running down there.Â He doesn't really do anything quick, so I don't see him running down there.Â (Laughter.)
PAULA CREAMER:Â We're killing our caddies.
Q.Â Paula, you mentioned if you could have a song walking out on hole.Â What would that song be?
PAULA CREAMER:Â It wouldn't be the Pink Panther I don't think.Â It's too‑‑ I don't know.Â Maybe like California Girl or something like that.Â I have to think about it.Â Have to be a pretty awesome one, though.
Q.Â If you're in Ohio, go for Sloopy.
PAULA CREAMER:Â But I'm a California girl.Â That's why I need another hometown here.
Q.Â How about you, Stacy?
STACY LEWIS:Â No idea.
PAULA CREAMER:Â Nothing.Â There would be no song.
STACY LEWIS:Â There would be a song.Â But, yeah, I wouldn't need one.Â Just walk out there.Â Maybe a country song or something like that being from Texas.Â I don't know what I would do.
Q.Â Why doesn't it happen if the players want that?
STACY LEWIS:Â I don't know if the players necessarily want it.Â I think it would be cool like at a Solheim Cup or a special event.Â Can't do it week in and week out.Â Be a little distracting, I think.
But I think it would be cool like at a smaller event, like Solheim Cup or International Crown.Â That would be a cool concept, actually.
PAULA CREAMER:Â Now it's going to happen.
STACY LEWIS:Â You're calling your boss now.
MODERATOR:Â Paula, you're up for an ESPY.Â Very exciting.Â Very cool.Â For your best play, something that happened months ago but it's still been recognized.Â You're in the final four.Â Everyone vote for Paula.
How cool is that to see something that you did become so mainstream?Â Doesn't seem like it may be a huge deal for you, but for the LPGA...
PAULA CREAMER:Â No, it was a huge deal for me.Â I was so excited when I saw.Â Obviously you get your female golfers and athletes, but best play, I mean, it's a tough competition, especially going against that Auburn game.
Just to be in that and have the fans support‑‑ I was the only girl‑‑ that was awesome.Â The putt was just ‑‑Â I will never forget that.Â I always say‑‑ I told Derek, my fiancee, whenever we have kids and they start mouthing off and saying you're not cool, I'm going to show them that putt.Â I have one time I can use it as my go‑to.
I don't know.Â It's neat that it was captured all over the world, too.Â It was exciting for just golf in general.Â I couldn't do it again.Â I don't have to do it again.Â That's the good thing.
MODERATOR:Â Once is enough.
Q.Â First, Paula, I'm sure when the season started the first thing on your checklist was you wanted to win a tournament, which you took care of very early.Â Comparing your stats for this year to the first nine years, your driving average is up.Â A lot.Â Ten yards, maybe more than that.Â But your fairways and greens in regulation, although good for most people, haven't been Paula‑like this year.Â When the season started, did you get together with your team and say, Things are changing out there; I need to add more yardage even if it means giving up some fairways?Â Are you satisfied with the results?
PAULA CREAMER:Â Yeah, my whole thing is I know I need to get longer for the game of golf.Â I'm tall.Â I'm strong.Â No reason why I can't hit it farther.Â Lots of it was swing changing.Â That's why I did it last year.Â It's still a work in progress.
Equipment, new ball, you know, all comes together.Â Yeah, when you're making ‑‑Â sometimes when you have to hit it farther you are going to lose a little bit of accuracy.Â I'm okay with that.Â No reason why.Â I don't sit there and look at the stats and say this.Â I know when I miss fairways and when I'm in the rough and things.
But I would rather keep going on this track.Â I think it's a positive thing for me.Â I think it's something that my team is obviously very aware of.Â But I have to get longer to keep going and to change my game.
Q.Â Stacy, you're definitely one of the most intense people I've ever met.Â Almost to the point when things aren't going right nobody wants to go near you.Â We've seen this work for you and against you.Â On the other hand, I've shut off my TV in anger a few times and said, So and so didn't beat Stacy today, Stacy beat Stacy.Â Do you feel like you're able to control that better now than you were, say, two years ago?
STACY LEWIS:Â Oh, yeah, I made a conscious effort over the last year to try to be better that way.Â I think it's part of being a top player, being No. 1 in the world, that it always goes together.
You can't be No. 1 in the world throwing your clubs around and doing that kind of stuff.Â I had to learn that.Â I had to grow.Â I had to figure that out on my own.
Yeah, everybody can sit there and tell you that, but it's something you have to learn.
It's something over really the last six months coming into this year that was a goal.Â I needed to bounce back quicker and not let things bother me so much.Â A lot of times is wasn't necessarily golf that was bothering me.Â It was other things I was letting get under my skin.
So I really feel like I've done a good job of it this year.Â I'm seeing that in my play, playing more consistently, bouncing back from bad rounds and bad holes.
It's something I'm working on and have to work on for the rest of my life because it's just my personality and the way I am.
Q.Â You've gotten to where you are, No. 1 in the world, player the year a couple years ago, with the issues with your back as a youngster.Â Do you ever just sit there and say, Wow, silly ride?
STACY LEWIS:Â Yeah, I say wow all the time.Â Even I wouldn't have predicted any of this five or six years ago.Â It was never a goal.Â I mean, I never thought I could be No. 1 in the world.
I wanted to come out here and win golf tournaments and be competitive.Â Everything else from there has been a blessing.Â It's been a crazy ride I've been on in the last two years.
My caddie threw out a stat or somebody, I had not been in the top 10 three times in the last year or something like that.Â It's just crazy when you think about it.Â I don't think about that stuff.
I just go out there and play golf and try to win tournaments.Â It's been a really fun ride.
Q.Â The ladies when they're going out to hole No. 1 that they're thinking about it long before they go up to it because you have to take two accurate shots.Â Would you say that's accurate for you?
STACY LEWIS:Â Yeah, the first hole here is one of the hard starting holes we have.Â I remember when I played my first event.Â I was an amateur.Â I was so nervous.Â I was like, Can I please just start on 10 so I can rip driver down there?Â Of course I have to start on 1.Â You have to hit a 3‑wood or iron or something.
I just remember being so nervous.Â I could barely get the ball on the tee.Â Yeah, it's a hard hole.Â You got to hit a good drive.Â You got to be in the fair way.Â Then you still have a long iron into the green.
Even if you make bogey there are other opportunities.Â You just got to hang in there.Â But I like it.Â It's a cool starting hole.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports