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May 31, 2015

Zach Johnson


Q.  Zach Johnson, great round Zach, 63.  Not much more you could have asked for from yourself today, was there?
ZACH JOHNSON:  No.  I mean you always would have, could have should have this.  Outside of a pretty poor bogey on 9 I really can't find another shot that I feel like I left out there, you know.
Yeah, I missed some putts but they weren't 6-footers.  They were that 12 to 20-foot range.  You can't make all of those.
I feel very pleased with my day today especially considering I haven't putted very well.  Worked on some things the beginning of this week and started to payoff.  I saw some dividends.  They paid off today.

Q.  Did you have a number in mind when you started today?  63 was pretty optimistic.
ZACH JOHNSON:  I didn't know what the wind was going to be, the north wind the first 5, 6 holes, it's very difficult.  You get through those even par you're doing good.
I got through them 1, 2-under, whatever it was.  I felt that was a good boost in the right direction.  With the wind you could take advantage of the backside because you're coming down.  You're downwind on those essentially 15, 16, 17, 18 -- 17 is brutal regardless of what the wind is.  15, 16 and 18, there's some opportunities here.  I had looks.  I didn't make everyone of them but I surely made my share.

Q.  You had a good birdie streak at 14, 15, 16, and 17, were you tempted at all?  Jordan went in the water before you, were you tempted at all to go more for the pin?
ZACH JOHNSON:  Absolutely.  I had a great number.  One of those things Damon, my caddy, got to the tee before I did.  I didn't know Jordan went in the water.  Looked like he was getting ready to cut out when we got to the tee box.
As a result obviously you hit it short and Damon was pretty confident and adamant the number I had in my mind and the club I had in my mind was proper and, you know, I don't want to say was a bail.  I tried to hold it.  I didn't hold it.
I took my 25-footer and on that green.  It's nothing to be ashamed about.  I hit a good putt and misread it and made a nice three foot for par.  I don't know what the stroke average is on that hole but I'm happy with 3.

Q.  Zach, nice round today.  Get some comments on your round.
ZACH JOHNSON:  Yeah.  Thank you.
It was good.  I got off to a good start and there was some tricky pins out there today, especially early on.  1 was a good pin.  2 and 3 in particular.  4 was -- they were tough pins.
I made it through the first four, five holes 1, 2-under.  I guess I have to think about it.  That kind of catapulted my day.  I pumped the brakes on 9.  Made a good save on 10 that led into my back-9.
Gave myself a lot of opportunities which is all you can ask for, you know, and I'm not upset about it.  Obviously would have, could have, should have, you can say that any day regardless of what the number is on your card but I made my share and, you know, we'll see what happens.

Q.  Certainly nice climb up the leaderboard.
ZACH JOHNSON:  Yeah.  That's what you want on Sundays and Saturdays, in particular, as well.  I felt like I really left a lot of shots out there the first two, three days.  I was 4-under early the 1st Round and only shot 1-under.
You know, I hadn't played here in ten years.  I'm not making excuses but lot of guys are probably in the same boat as I am.  But I thought it was a good place for me to try to play well here and, you know, I think the golf course is good for my game.  You have to hit fairways and usually my driver is one of my key components.

Q.  The weather has been very different today but has the course felt different?
ZACH JOHNSON:  Today is strange.  Chamber of Commerce right here.  They probably haven't had one of those in two, three months.  The golf course hasn't changed much.  Pretty wet with my pants and shoes.  It's wet.  Fairways are extremely wet.  The rough is wet.  Just an excessive amount of rain.  Nothing more than that.
It's unfortunate because this place, from what I remember, is certainly more stressful and a lot more tough when it's firm and fast.  You really got to be careful of where you land your tees shots and approach shots.  The greens get firm and fast typically.  As a result, it's more difficult.  That's why I think we got guys in the teens under par because -- there's going to be some birdies coming in.

Q.  Do you think your number will be good enough to be in the mix at the tail-end?
ZACH JOHNSON:  I haven't seen anybody's numbers.  It's irrelevant.  I don't have any idea of this game.  Never count on anything.  I guess technically I could be in a playoff or thereabout.  I could lose by 5.  You never know.

Q.  Zach, given the fact of all the changes, what is your schedule going to be?
ZACH JOHNSON:  Yeah.  I don't know.  I don't have any idea.  It's a different schedule this year.  Next year is going to be vastly different because of the Olympics starting basically once we get to summer.  I don't have any idea what it is.
My schedule is like everybody's, strategic with what weeks I'm going to take off, what weeks I'm going to play, based on my kids and family and based on the golf course.
There's so many factors involved in that equation.  I don't have any idea.  I love Dallas and obviously enjoyed Texas golf, to a degree.  I don't have any idea.
I'll tell you what's been really special because I haven't been here in ten years, I haven't seen Ms. Peggy Nelson in essentially ten years.  The last time I played Lord Byron was still around.  It's special to see her.

Q.  How was it when you guys saw each other out here?
ZACH JOHNSON:  I saw her during the week a few times, too, which was nice.  She's all about hugs.  Great.  Likes to embrace and she's taken ownership of this place as she should.  We want her to be here.
This is her -- one of her family legacies.  Got a lot of legacy with his family and obviously his golf resume is part of it, knowing that man and the people that were part of his family are more important.
That family is won to aspire to and certainly as a professional aspired to be, too.  I have a resume but there's not much of a mirror image between his and mine.
Like I said, it's special to have her out here and obviously 18 tee stepping up now and actually taking control and ownership as well with her, the Dallas tournament is going to get bigger and better.

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