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July 9, 2015

Karrie Webb


MIKE TROSTEL: It's my pleasure to welcome Karrie Webb into the media center. Karrie had a round of 66, 4-under par out in 35, in in 31. Karrie is playing in her 20th United States Women's Open Championship this year. The champion in 2000, at the Merit Club in 2001 at Pine Needles. Great round today. Started off with a bunch of pars and you got it going a little bit on the front nine, your second nine, with birdies at 2, 4, 6 and 8.

KARRIE WEBB: Yes, a very solid round. I hit every fairway, missed just the last green on 9. And pretty patient. I had some looks on the back nine, which was my first nine, and didn't get anything to go. Hit a nice iron shot into the second and that was about a two- or three-footer. So it got me into red numbers, and I played a really great front nine or back nine, to finish.

MIKE TROSTEL: You had three top-10s in the past couple months. Seems like your game is rounding into shape. Your ball striking today was tremendous. As you mentioned, all 14 fairways, 17 of 18 greens. Do you feel like your game is really the best it's been all year?

KARRIE WEBB: Yeah, it has been. It's been a test of my patience, I feel like I've had some good golf in me. I played well at the KPMG a couple of weeks ago, and I felt like I played quite well there. Inbee just played unbelievable and ran away with it. So I felt good. I hit the ball well there. And I felt good coming into here, just trying not to set the expectations too high, put too much pressure on myself.

MIKE TROSTEL: How do you feel like the course played today? You mentioned earlier you used every club in your bag except the 6-iron. Did you like the way the course was set up?

KARRIE WEBB: Yeah, we had a bit of wait on 8 tee so I was thinking about all the shots that we had hit in. I used every club in the bag except the 6-iron. I think they did a great job of setting the course up today. I think that's a good testament to a good set up that you're using every club in your bag. I don't think they can really control how soft the course is. We've had a lot of rain and maybe a little bit more to come. But I think they can set the pins harder, which may happen. But I thought it was I a good set up for the first round.

Q. You started on the back nine, which is considered to be the tougher nine here. Did that get you on an even keel or give you an advantage knowing you got through that even par?
KARRIE WEBB: Yes and no. I saw Morgan played it in 3-under. But really I think starting on 10, first up, you know, I think it increased the nerves a little bit because you knew you had 10 and 11 and 12, really. You don't really have a great feel for how far you're hitting it yet by the time you're getting to 12, and that's a tough number with the pin right on the front there. It's a tough start but I managed to settle in very quickly. I had a good look at 11 and a good look at 12. I settled in well and played the back nine solidly. Like I said, I stayed patient because I had a number of putts that I thought I could have made to get into red numbers through the first nine.

Q. Congratulations on a great round.
KARRIE WEBB: Thank you.

Q. I wanted to get your thoughts, I know you started on the back, but conventional play, the stretch of holes about 8 through 11, maybe into 12, the importance of getting through that even par maybe every day, how important do you think that is to your success overall?
KARRIE WEBB: I actually hadn't looked at it as far as scoring, but you're right, that stretch is quite a tough stretch of holes. I think getting through any stretch of holes at even par during the week is a good test. I just think you've got to buckle down through those holes and really hit some good shots and give yourself good looks. But I guess I don't really think about score through there. But they are probably the toughest stretch of holes on the course.

Q. This is way too early to ask you this question, I apologize, but I'm going to ask it anyways. The number of majors that you won, you're in lofty company with legends, is that something you think about? Is history something that matters to you?
KARRIE WEBB: That is way too early to ask me that question. Ask me on Sunday. No, honestly I don't -- I could probably guess at who's won more majors, but I can tell you I've never looked. I know Patty Berg has the most, that's probably the number that I know. But that's never been a goal of mine. I'm just happy to get off to a good start and hopefully continue to play this good for the next three days.

Q. You played in a lot of these and it's unusual to ask this question so early in the week, but the crowd support has been so fantastic. What can you compare it to in terms of other U.S. Opens that you've played in?
KARRIE WEBB: I'm trying to think. I mean I felt early on this week that we were going to have good crowds. We had a lot of people out here for practice rounds. I think we've had good crowds at Pine Needles when we played in May, anyway, the last time we played there. I think it was a bit hot. But I'm trying to think where else. I knew early on this week that we'd have a great atmosphere here this year. People were excited to have us here.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about what motivates you at this point in your career and does the thought of maybe playing in the Olympics, does that keep you going, as well?
KARRIE WEBB: Well, obviously the Olympics has kept me more focused as far as working hard and stuff like that. But it's not like a daily thing that I think about. Playing rounds like this is what motivates me. I've worked really hard over the last year, because I changed coaches. And what's really pleasing is to play like this, because I know that I've worked really hard and the swing is starting to be a little more automatic. I don't have to think about what body part moves when. And it's nice to have played so solidly today and really feel like I didn't have to think technically too much at all.

Q. There is a lot of talk before today, anyway, about the course being soft and perhaps advantageous to the longer hitters. Having played it today, do you have a thought about that, would you concur or has that been overstated a bit?
KARRIE WEBB: Just the way it was set up today I don't think the course sets up any differently for longer hitters or shorter hitters. The greens are soft enough that shorter hitters are still going to be able to hold the green. Like No. 8, I hit a 5-wood in there and landed it five, six -- five or six short of the pin and it finished a yard short. So anyone that has to do that more often is still -- the course is still -- you're able to get into some of the pins because they're a little bit softer.

Q. In the book it says that this is the first round in the '60s that you've shot in a U.S. Women's Open since the last time you won, 2001. Does that surprise you and what do you think the reason is, is it just tough course setup?
KARRIE WEBB: What did I shoot then? It was the second round I shot in the 60s, right?

Q. It was three rounds you shot in 2001 --
KARRIE WEBB: I thought you said the first round. Thank you.

Q. But I was just wondering does that surprise you and why do you think that is?
KARRIE WEBB: I hadn't thought about it. But it's a good sign.

MIKE TROSTEL: Karrie Webb, a 4-under par, 66, to start off. Very well played.

KARRIE WEBB: Thanks, guys.
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