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May 1, 2015

Gary Woodland


Q.  Gary, congratulations.  Great match with Webb Simpson down to the 18th hole.  Having a 1‑up lead for most of the match.  Extended it to 2 with that great putt at 16.  Talk about the way you played today?
GARY WOODLAND:  It was solid.  It was kind of back and forth.  Neither one of us had anything going, really.  We were both making a bunch of pars.  It was nice to get the 1‑up lead early.  And then just maintain that, really, to be honest with you.
The putt on 16 was huge because it gave me a little cushion.  To give one away on 17 was a little frustrating.
All in all I'm happy to get away with the win today and who knows what holds the next two days.

Q.  In your previous two trips into this event you were one and done, what's the difference this time?  Is it a different mindset?  Was it the format?
GARY WOODLAND:  No, I took a lot from last year.  I played really, really good.  It was one of the better rounds I played all year, 3‑up on G‑Mac with three to go.  Just didn't close.  I didn't hit bad shots, but he also made a couple of putts on me.
But I learned a lot from that.  And I carried it over.  That's what it's all about out here.  You don't have to play your best golf, you just have to beat the other guy and that's what I've done so far.

Q.  And your opponent in the Sweet 16 will be Marc Leishman, your thoughts on playing him?
GARY WOODLAND:  Marc is a great gay.  I enjoy Marc.  I'm happy his wife is doing better and we should have a good day.

Q.  Gary Woodland just beat Webb Simpson to move on to the round of 16.
GARY WOODLAND:  I got off to a good start, played solid early.  It was a big putt on 16 because I needed a little cushion there, obviously 3‑putting 17 was frustrating.
I'm excited to get through.  I played pretty solid for three straight days.  Looking forward to tomorrow.

Q.  The three straight days you had some very tough opponents to play.  It was a very tough group.  How good does it feel to get out with three wins?
GARY WOODLAND:  It's nice.  Three great match play players.  Three guys that putt it really well, which in match play is a huge key.  To come out on top all three days is pretty exciting.

Q.  What is your mindset heading into the weekend now that it's win or go home?
GARY WOODLAND:  Yeah, I'm starting to put it together.  The first day I didn't hit it very well.  Yesterday I hit it pretty good.  Today was more solid.  So hopefully I can put it all together tomorrow and have a good weekend.

Q.  You had arguably the toughest group this week to go 3‑0 is something you've got to be proud of?
GARY WOODLAND:  Yeah, that's a good thing.  Obviously playing three guys that have match play experience that have done well in it, guys that putted really well, too, that's the key in match play, you have to make putts.  I played three guys that putted pretty dang well, so to come out on top is nice.
I'm also excited about the way I'm playing.  I'm starting to put it all together.  I didn't drive it very well today.  But all in all the ball‑striking is coming around.  I'm seeing some putts go in, too, which is a good thing.

Q.  Now that you're back to truly do or die today, win or go home, did it feel different than the first two days?
GARY WOODLAND:  A little bit.  Like you said it was do or die today.  It was nice to come out and get the start early.  To get 1‑up early, to make the putt on 2, I had some longer putts go in today, which was nice.  I've been making a lot of shorter putts, but today I made some longer putts, put some pressure on him.  It was a big putt on 16 which was huge to give me a little cushion.  17 is a tough hole.  And 18 is a birdie hole.  

Q.  You're watching momentum possibly slip away on 16, and you made that big putt?
GARY WOODLAND:  That was big.  To give the momentum away on 15.  I had it after making a couple of birdies there on‑‑ a big putt on 12 to save and the win on 13 was huge.  And to give it away on 15 was frustrating.  I needed to come away with a big putt on 16.  It was a perfect number for driver.  I missed it and hit it in the bunker.  He had a pretty good look there.  So to make the longer putt was a big deal.  It also gave me a cushion coming in, which obviously I needed.

Q.  You said you're excited that your game is really coming together.  You've got to be really excited about the weekend now, where you are the last three days heading into tomorrow?
GARY WOODLAND:  I am, yeah.  The golf course suits me really well.  It allows me to hit driver, which is good.  And it just sets up well for my eye.  For me to hit driver, if I drive it in the fairway I'm turning a lot of holes into birdie holes.  So that's the key for me tomorrow.  If I drive it pretty well I should have a pretty good chance for the weekend.

Q.  Today you were almost even from early in the morning when the sun was still out until about 11:00 when the fog came in?
GARY WOODLAND:  It got cold in a hurry.  It was beautiful this morning.  I'm glad a put the sweater in the bag, I almost left it in the locker.  It got cold.  The ball wasn't traveling as far.  This morning it was moving pretty good.  And it got me a couple of holes coming down the stretch, I definitely wasn't hitting as far as I was during the round, and it got me a little bit.  I was fortunate to get a cushion and to pull it out.

Q.  You hit driver on all but a handful of holes?
GARY WOODLAND:  I am.  Today on the backside a little bit, on a couple of the pins I hit irons.  Especially the front nine, I hit driver every hole, and started the back nine hitting a lot of drivers, which is great.  I've been driving it pretty well the last couple of weeks, that's what I was focusing on, and it's been paying off.

Q.  It wasn't too much on 16?  What was your number?
GARY WOODLAND:  It was just with the wind, I only had 280 front, 310 hole.  It was a perfect number for a driver.  I had to hit it easy, though, and I just missed it a little bit.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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