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PUERTO RICO OPEN


March 4, 2015


Corey Conners


RIO GRANDE, PUERTO RICO

Q.テつ How's everything going?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Very well.

Q.テつ Yeah?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Pretty cool.

Q.テつ When did you get down here?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Sunday, around lunchtime.

Q.テつ Yeah?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Played in the afternoon.

Q.テつ Have you ever been to Puerto Rico before?
COREY CONNERS:テつ I don't think so.

Q.テつ Anywhere tropical?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah.テつ I've been on a bunch of cruises when I was younger.テつ My grandfather was a doctor on a cruise ship.テつ So I've been all around the care been before, so I may have been to San Juan.テつ I can't remember.

Q.テつ This is my first time anywhere tropical.テつ Well, what do you think of Puerto Rico so far?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Well, it's very nice.テつ The resort here is fantastic.テつ The golf course is good.テつ People seem very nice, so yeah.

Q.テつ Have you had any time to relax or enjoy anything?
COREY CONNERS:テつ I don't know.テつ A little bit.テつ Sat by the pool just for a little while on Monday, I guess.テつ Went to the rain forest, went for a little drive.テつ That was pretty cool.テつ Big water fall.

Q.テつ Oh, cool.
COREY CONNERS:テつ That was neat.テつ So yeah, but mostly golfing so far.

Q.テつ What do you think of the course?
COREY CONNERS:テつ It's really nice.テつ I think it sets up well for me.テつ There's room off the tee, but being straight is going to be important.テつ That's one of my strengths.
And then just hitting a lot of greens and giving yourself lots of birdie opportunities.

Q.テつ Well, obviously the question that everybody wants to know is how you're preparing for Augusta and your road there.テつ So tell me a little bit about back at the U. S. Am, and when it all kind of came to the realization that you had this opportunity.
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah.テつ It didn't sink in until a little bit after the U. S. Am.テつ I was pretty excited then, but took a little while getting home, relaxing and seeing family and friends, and it kind of sunk in, got overwhelmed with excitement.テつ Been pretty excited ever since then.
Yeah, I've been playing in a lot of tournaments in the last number of months.テつ I've been in Japan, Argentina and Australia, playing in amateur events.テつ So it's been great to get the opportunity to travel and keep playing in lots of tournaments.
And that was pretty much the game plan, just keep playing in preparation for the Masters.

Q.テつ So thinking long term and after Augusta, what career plans are you thinking?
COREY CONNERS:テつ I'll definitely make the transition to the pro ranks.テつ I think I've had quite a bit of success in amateur golf, and playing pro is definitely a goal, and hopefully become a member of the PGA TOUR as soon as possible.テつ It's pretty awesome to be out here with all the best players in the world.

Q.テつ Yeah.テつ So going into this week and seeing the field.テつ You have legends.テつ You have young guys.テつ This is traditionally an event the last couple of years where young guys really do well, lots of rookies of the year coming out of here.テつ So talk a little bit about the field and what you're looking forward to with these fellow competitors this week.
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah.テつ Definitely excited for the opportunity, knowing that young guys have played well and knowing that I can give myself a chance to do well by playing my game.
Yeah.テつ It's pretty cool to be out here with a lot of the young stars and then some veteran players that I've watched over the years and I look up to.
So yeah, it's pretty neat.テつ It's a cool mix of players in the field.テつ I'm excited.

Q.テつ Speaking of veteran players and headed to the Masters, are there any names that, you know, if you run into or play with or that would really‑‑
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah.テつ I'm definitely hoping to play with Mike Weir.テつ He has withdrawn from the last couple of events.テつ He's struggling with injury.
But yeah, would definitely like to play with him, obviously a fellow Canadian and previous Masters champ, so I'm sure he has some good knowledge to share.
Basically anyone who I can learn from out there will be great.

Q.テつ There's so much talent that comes out of Canada, and it's a very strong, eclectic group of guys.テつ What have as far as Canadian players, what have you seen with how they come to the TOUR?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah, the national team in Canada has been fantastic, really helped with my development and lots of other Canadian players this year.テつ Everybody is seeing now with more and more Canadians on the TOUR, they start pretty young and try and provide resources for the players to succeed.
And yeah, they have a great program.テつ Definitely helped me immensely.テつ I can't thank them enough for all the opportunities that they've given me, and they'll continue to help me until I reach my goals.
So yeah, it's pretty cool to see them having success.テつ I was kind of expecting this to happen, because there's been a lot of really good Canadian players coming up through the amateur ranks, and now everybody is seeing them on TOUR here and Web.com Tour.

Q.テつ Right.テつ And also you have a lot of collegiate alliances, lots of players from the same teams who are doing well on tour.テつ What about your college?テつ You're not so far removed from your college days.
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah.テつ I don't know.テつ I guess a number of coaches have connections to Canada, whether they were originally born in Canada.
Me personally, Herb Page at Kent State was born in Canada, so he kind of has that Canadian connection.テつ He's always had Canadian players.テつ There's kind of a little pipeline of top Canadian players going to Kent State where I went.
And the people who were there, Canadians that were there before me I kind of looked up to and wanted to follow in their footsteps, so I think things like that happen.テつ I know there's a lot of Canadian guys that I'm friends with that are at Houston right now and basically all over the country.
I think the Canadians having success are making all the coaches aware that Canada has some top players and they're recruiting more up there now.

Q.テつ So tell me your goal for this week specifically.
COREY CONNERS:テつ To enjoy the experience.テつ Hopefully learn a lot and play well.テつ I know‑‑ or I feel like my game's really solid right now, and there's no reason I can't put four good rounds together and can compete with these guys.テつ So I'm excited, and yeah, just hope to play my own game and learn a lot.

Q.テつ Two last questions.テつ Do you have a favorite Masters year, memory that sticks out to you?
COREY CONNERS:テつ Well, I think I've told the story a few times, in 2003 when Mike Weir won.テつ Obviously that was huge for Canada.テつ I remember watching TV at home and he had a six‑foot putt to win‑‑ or get into the playoff on 18.テつ I had to leave the room.テつ I was so nervous, I just couldn't watch.テつ And I was sitting on the stairwell and heard my dad clapping, and I knew that he made the putt.テつ So that was really‑‑ I might have been more nervous than he was, but that was pretty cool and was huge for Canadian golf.テつ So that's probably my favorite.
Also Tiger Woods in '97.テつ I got a VHS of that, and I watched that hundreds of times when I was a kid.テつ He dominated, won by I think 12 shots.

Q.テつ And so we're getting closer to April.テつ Final months.テつ You know, is it hard for you to sleep at night?テつ Are you doing okay?
COREY CONNERS:テつ No.テつ I'm doing fine.テつ Yeah, I think I've learned a lot and learned how to deal with pressure of big events through my amateur career.テつ Obviously this is a little bit bigger, but I think I'll be able to handle it really well.テつ And yeah, haven't lost any sleep yet.

Q.テつ Well, good.テつ All right.テつ Well, that's perfect.テつ Thank you so much.テつ Nice to meet you.
COREY CONNERS:テつ Yeah.テつ Nice to meet you too.

Q.テつ Good luck this week and hopefully we'll have you back in here talking some more.
COREY CONNERS:テつ Perfect.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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