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May 15, 2015

Alison Lee


Q.  Tell us about your day.  How did it feel out there?
ALISON LEE:  Felt pretty good.  Coming into today I felt really confident, especially after my round yesterday.  I was striking the ball well, was putting well, and got it rolling on the front nine.
Too bad on the back.  I started to kind of lose a lot of the focus and a lot of my concentration and I was kind of struggling with my approach shots.  Thankfully I was able to make a lot of good saves and par saves coming down the stretch.

Q.  How do you feel about going into the weekend against the field at this point?
ALISON LEE:  Feeling good.  Especially being on the top of the leaderboard going into the weekend definitely gives me an advantage for this week.
Anything can happen.  This tournament is only halfway over.  I'm going to try my best to stay focused and stay in the game, because anything can happen.

Q.  You said you lost your focus.  When that happens, what causes that for a young player?
ALISON LEE:  For me, it was kind of a little bit of fatigue, tired.  It was getting kind of late in the day and I was ready for the round to be over.
But, yeah, it's a lot a mental thing.  So I told myself to stay in it because it wasn't over yet and I still had a couple tricky holes coming down and a couple birdie chances also to extend the lead.
I felt like I stayed in there and had a good approach shot into 18.  So, yeah.

Q.  Is this the first time you've led a tournament on tour?
ALISON LEE:  Well, at the Kia I was leading on the final day after a couple holes, so that was pretty cool.
I think this is my first time leading going into weekend.

Q.  How do you handle the pressure of sleeping on the lead?
ALISON LEE:  I'm just not going to think about it too much.  Thankfully my I host family is cooking some dinner for me today.  So just go back and have dinner and just rest and just prepare for tomorrow.

Q.  How did you feel that you handled the Sunday pressure at Kia when you were in the lead?  I think you finished fourth, a couple back.
ALISON LEE:  Yeah, definitely was a huge learning experience for me.  It was really cool to play in the final group on the last day, and I definitely learned a lot from the pros I played with that day.
Yeah, feel like I did my best.  I did have a couple mistakes in the middle of my round that week, that day.  But positive, everything is positive from that tournament, and I'll use it and apply it to every tournament I play in in the future.

Q.  Did you take encouragement when you see other rookies doing well out here?  Two have won this year; another right behind you on the leaderboard today.
ALISON LEE:  Definitely.  It's great competition.  It adds the fuel to the fire for me.  Since I see all these other rookies playing well I want to too and I want to make a name for myself.
I think it's really awesome that all the rookies this year are playing really well and it's a really, tight, tight race.
Yeah, with Minjee Lee also up there with me, I've known her for a while now, so it'll be a cool rivalry among us.

Q.  Very acquainted after Q‑School, right?

Q.  Did you play with her in the same group at Q‑School?
ALISON LEE:  No.  She played in the group behind me on the final day.  I've played several junior golf events with her.
We actually played in the final round at the U.S. girls three years ago or so.  She ended up winning the tournament; I got second.
But it's awesome.  She's a great friend.  Yeah, she's also a great golfer, so I'm really looking forward to playing with her tomorrow.

Q.  Does the success you had college and in junior golf, does any of that translate out here?
ALISON LEE:  Yeah, of course.

Q.  Or is the game entirely different?
ALISON LEE:  It's a step‑by‑step process.  I feel like is something really important, and playing junior golf and then going into college and then coming out here on tour has beena really ‑‑ I haven't jumped any steps or anything.
Yeah, definitely prepared me for life out here.  Especially college.  You know, being alone and figuring out my own game for myself and what works for me, what kind of practice routine works for me as opposed to my parents telling me what to do.
I definitely really learned lot from that, and I really enjoyed it.  Yeah, I feel like there are so many great younger players out here now.  Junior golf had definitely had as impact on I feel like all the play that's been going on right now with all the young girls.

Q.  We notice you were talk talking with Christina a lot in the fairway today.  Did she kind of give you any veteran advice?
ALISON LEE:  Yeah, of course.  I have her number, so she tells me I can just shoot her whenever I want.  She's in my pod group, so she's like an older sister to me right now this year on tour.
She's been nothing but friendly.  She's been an awesome friend, and really guiding me through the process of my rookie year.  You know, I have someone out here I know that I can ask if I have anything ‑‑  even though it's a stupid, dumb question, I know I can ask here and she won't judge me.  It's nice to have.

Q.  When you enrolled at UCLA, did you have a plan in mind as to when you were going to turn professional?
ALISON LEE:  I was going to see what happened.  I committed to UCLA when I was sophomore in high school, and it really depended on how I played.  I wanted to graduate, and I'm on the path to graduating right now.  But wanted to play on the team for four years.
You know, thankfully I had a great freshman year and I felt like I was ready to turn pro, my game was ready.  So I decided to try out Q‑School, and I'm really glad did.  Now I'm out here playing professional golf.  It's pretty cool.
Definitely not planned at all.  It was just kind of a timing thing.  I felt like the timing was right.

Q.  How difficult was it to leave UCLA?
ALISON LEE:  Yeah, it was difficult.  I had developed a good relationship with the coach, Carrie Forsyth and assistant coach Alicia.
They have been great mentors.  They've helped me a lot with my swing and game a lot through my freshman year.  And, yeah, all my teammates and friends back at school, every time it's an off week I go back to school and see all of them.
I'm kind of not over with that life yet.  I'm clinging on to my college life.
Yeah, but I definitely miss playing as a team.  It's really different golf out here playing as an individual.

Q.  Run through a few of your better shots, better holes today.
ALISON LEE:  Today I feel like for me probably No. 7, the par‑5; I had a good approach shot into the green.  I was able to get on in two because they moved the tees up.  I felt like that kept me in check, because like I said, I was kind of losing focus and I was able to focus on that shot, hit it good, and get it on the green.
I feel like that, for me, was my most memorable.  Thing else is kind of a blur because I was like, I'm tired.

Q.  That was just a routine two‑putt birdie?

Q.  And it came on the heels of your only bogey; is that right?
ALISON LEE:  Yes.  I three‑putted on 6.  Yeah.

Q.  So how cool was for it to immediately get that back?
ALISON LEE:  It was good to bounce back.  On 6, it was really dumb bogey putt.  I had a good easy, 15‑, 20‑footer putt for birdie, and I just smacked it way by and had an 8‑footer coming back.
So, yeah, that was mostly because I wasn't concentrating and I was just out of it.  But I was able to snap back in it on No. 7 and get that birdie.

Q.  You're still in school, right?
ALISON LEE:  Right now I'm enrolled but I'm not taking classes for the spring.

Q.  The semester is over?
ALISON LEE:  We're a quarter system, so the quarter is almost over.  I have a couple summer classes I'm taking, and it's starting of the end of this month.

Q.  This has been your first stretch without having to worry about school, right?
ALISON LEE:  Uh‑huh.

Q.  How have you found that?
ALISON LEE:  I always feel like I need to do something, but I have so much more time now.  It's weird.  It's kind of nice, but I kind of miss it.
It's like I have this whole empty time frame that I don't know what to do.

Q.  You can Bedazzle your bag.
ALISON LEE:  Yes.  That's why I Bedazzled my bag.  Nothing else to do.

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