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September 8, 2015

Morgan Pressel

Alison Lee

Lizette Salas

Evian-les-Bains, France

THE MODERATOR: It is my pleasure to get things kicked off officially this week with our first press conference. Three players that are not only competing this week at the Evian Championship, the final major of the year, but also next week in Germany representing the United States at the Solheim Cup. To my immediate left is Morgan Pressel, two-time winner on the LPGA making her fifth appearance next week in the Solheim Cup. We have Alison Lee, the rookie, the only rookie to be making her first appearance next week, and Lizette Salas, LPGA Tour winner, also making her second appearance next week at the Solheim Cup.

Ladies, thank you for joining us, and congratulations on making the team.

Morgan, I'll start off with you. This two-week stretch had to be circled on your calendar for quite some time, Solheim Cup, major, back-to-back weeks. Everybody says this is a huge stretch. How do you mentally and physically prepare, try to get your game and your mind right for this two-week stretch?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, it's definitely tough just in terms of the intensity of the golf over the two weeks, the concentration that really it will take on every shot. Just come into it knowing what you're up against, and this afternoon I'll certainly lay low and try to rest a little bit, and tomorrow will be a Pro-Am, and then after the event this week I think Monday will certainly -- normally Mondays after a major are kind of a relief day where you've got to give your mind a break from overthinking, usually. So it will be interesting having it be Monday of the Solheim Cup. But I think everybody will want a little bit of a rest come Monday and get back at it.

THE MODERATOR: Lizette, you had your first experience in Colorado. Does that entire week just meet your expectations or completely exceed them? Did you know what to expect or how did that entire week go for you?

LIZETTE SALAS: I mean, they told me what to expect, but it just exceeded everything that I thought. It was definitely exhausting coming after Solheim, I was just exhausted, all the emotion and all the concentration you had to go through. So I definitely know what I'm up against this time, and knowing that we're not home, silence will be my expectations from the crowd. But, yeah, I'm more mentally prepared this time, so I'm just really excited for these two weeks.

THE MODERATOR: Alison, making your first appearance next week. Your main goal this year you said was to make the Solheim Cup team somehow and you did. How proud are you of yourself that you played your way on to the team through the Rolex Rankings and what do you expect for next week?

ALISON LEE: First of all, this being my first Solheim Cup, I honestly have no idea what's going to happen, and I obviously have played in several Junior Solheim Cups so I know what it's like to be there and to cheer on Team USA. But being able to play on the team this year and actually be one to represent my country, I'm just super excited.

Yeah, I mean, ever since I turned pro definitely Solheim Cup was on my mind because I played in three Junior Solheim Cups, so to me, it's always been a dream of mine to actually play in the Solheim Cup. I'm actually kind of glad it's in Europe this year. I feel like it will be a little less nerve-racking because there won't be, obviously, as many U.S. supporters out there. But I feel like that's going to be to my advantage so I won't be as nervous.

THE MODERATOR: I was going to ask you, what are your expectations? Do you want to say, I'm a rookie, I don't have any, I'm going to go out there and hold my own, or do you really want to go out and be a full-on contributor?

ALISON LEE: Yeah, for sure. I definitely want to have a few points go up on the board to count for my team. Even though I feel like I've been playing well so far this year, so definitely it's something I would definitely want to contribute to the team and do everything I can to help us win.

THE MODERATOR: Morgan, this team is veteran-laden. There are a lot of players on there with a lot of experience. Where do you find your role as a veteran coming in being a vocal leader, leader by action, how do you lead in a team environment?

MORGAN PRESSEL: Oh, that's a good question. I mean, I think the first and foremost thing is my responsibility is to play good golf, and at the end of the day we can only control our own golf out there, between you and your partner and playing against the other group and that's Match Play. That's what I love about the Solheim Cup. That's what I've always enjoyed about Match Play.

But I mean, in terms of the team, I sat with Alison a little bit today and we kind of talked about what to expect and gave her a little bit, I don't know, maybe some good veteran knowledge (laughing). I don't know. You can ask her.

But like you said, a lot of the players have been there before. Lizette talked about how she wasn't really prepared last time and is going to come out swinging this time knowing what we're up against. I think we're all that way. A lot of the players have been on the last two losing teams, and we don't want that to happen again.

THE MODERATOR: Lizette, in terms of the difference between playing in America and playing in Europe, you haven't had that European experience yet. What do you expect and do you think, like Alison said, it will play to your advantage kind of going against the crowd a little bit?

LIZETTE SALAS: I think just from a media perspective everyone's kind of saying we're the underdogs, and the European team has been playing awesome, so I think the eyes are on them and we're going to just play our own golf.

I have not played in Europe or I wasn't on a Curtis Cup or Junior Solheim Cup team, so I'm just going to go out there and prepare. I don't know, prepare for some booing, prepare for some European chants, I have no clue.

I'm just preparing for anything, and I'm just going to go out there and kind of clear everything and make as many birdies with my partner as possible.

THE MODERATOR: Do you think personally that will give you a little bit of a rise, get you a little fired up?

LIZETTE SALAS: No, no, I'm going to do my usual fist pumps and just, I don't know, it will be fun. But I'm always the proving-people-wrong-kind of attitude, so I'm just going to say bring it on and we'll see who comes out on top on Sunday.

Q. Just thinking about this week, is it difficult not to think ahead to the Solheim? You've got a major in front of you here. Is it hard to keep the focus and not let your concentration drift to playing against Europe?
MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, I think everybody's talking about it so certainly it's been in the front of everyone's mind here with a huge major championship, the last one of the year and then going next week with both teams playing here it's certainly something that people are talking about. But at the end of the day if I can play well this week, that gives me a lot of confidence going into next week.

I'm here. I'm here. I came here to win this tournament and not just to prepare for Solheim Cup. So that's kind of the way that I'm trying to put as much energy into certainly getting out, feeling around the golf course like we all did this morning and trying to be prepared come Thursday.

Q. Playing for your country here in a way would it really give the team an edge if sort of a U.S. player wins, and would it give Europe a bit of an edge if one of theirs win?
MORGAN PRESSEL: Well, I think either way it's certainly a confidence booster. Anybody who comes out holding the trophy at the end of the week is going to be pretty happy and that's going to carry, I think, a lot of weight into next week. But it's still five days later and you never know. Every day is different out here and just got both teams definitely need to bring their game next week.

Q. Have any of you guys done any extra physical preparation knowing that, I mean, you'd love to win obviously on Sunday, but to win a major takes a lot out of you. Lizette, you were just saying you're exhausted after the Solheim Cup. So it's going to be a big week never mind emotionally but physically as well. So have you done anything extra for that?
LIZETTE SALAS: I think we already have a pretty long, grueling season. And I think the physical preparation that we do normally throughout the season is what helps us with our endurance. I think the thing, not so much this week, I feel like if it was the opposite way, it might even be more challenging if Solheim Cup was first just because of the super high emotions, not just the mental test that a major brings which is one of the toughest tests in golf. But also on top of the mental test, you also have the emotional playing for your country, playing for your teammates. That's a little bit even more so next week.

But I think we're all pretty much prepared. We're all ready to go. This is a very hilly golf course, challenging to walk, but we're all ready to go.

ALISON LEE: I just threw in an extra workout or two at home. I was two weeks at home and did some lunges last night, some squats, and I'm definitely feeling it today.

LIZETTE SALAS: Getting after it.

ALISON LEE: I'm just trying to do my part, and this is a very hilly golf course. For me to have my legs being strong and to be able to play the golf course and even play 36 holes next week, so I'm just getting ready.

MORGAN PRESSEL: She's good. She's fine. I mean, I feel like we just have to make sure we pace ourselves. I think that will be really important, especially this being a long week and for sure next week will be a long week, so it will be good to pace ourselves and not overprepare, I guess. Because, like I said, it will be a really long mental and physical test next week, so we need to make sure we have 100% energy by the end of singles matches.

So for me I've spent all year preparing, and I feel like for me I just need to do my best to keep my pace and try and maintain as much energy as I can.

Q. Could you give us a little bit of background in your Korean heritage. Were your mom and dad more than in America?
ALISON LEE: Both my parents were born in Korea. My mom came to America when she was around 14, so like around junior high, high school, and she went to college in the States and grew up in California. My dad was also born in Korea, but he's half Korean and half Irish, I believe.

But, yeah, he came to America for college when he was in college. But they both met in California. Yeah, I was born in L.A. I still live in L.A., and I want to live in L.A. forever, but I don't know about that. But, yeah, I'm a California girl, yes.

Q. Can you tell us how your parents met?
ALISON LEE: Well, it's a really long and complicated story. My grandma met my grandpa in Korea just after the Korean war, so he was an American soldier that was in Korea and then, yeah. The rest is obvious, so it's pretty simple.

Q. So he was Irish?
ALISON LEE: His ethnicity was Irish, but he was American.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
ALISON LEE: European of some decent.

Q. Alison, your first appearance at this championship. What did you hear about this event? I'm sure you saw pictures and heard about it, but what did you hear about it and what did you think about this venue itself when you first got here?
ALISON LEE: I've heard a lot about this event. This is my first time in France, so I didn't know what to expect. I just heard stories about how it is a challenging golf course and it will definitely be a test to all of our games and mentally as well to be able to play the golf course. I didn't play all 18 today.

But, yeah, I would say it's it is a challenging golf course and you're going to have to know where to hit the ball and where to leave yourself. So it's not just a straightforward golf course. So you're going to have to definitely play strategically and carefully and not too aggressively.

Yeah, it's definitely a test, and I'm really looking forward to it.

Q. I counted, this is your tenth appearance, Morgan, at this event. Happy anniversary. How have you seen an evolution of this championship go from a spectacular event on Tour that you love to come to to a major? How have you seen the evolution of this current state of a championship now?
MORGAN PRESSEL: I think every year it keeps getting bigger. Obviously the golf course is actually a fairly different golf course than we used to play. All the greens have been redone. It's quite different from the way it was probably my first six years or so.

I mean, just look at all of the people that will come out on Sunday. It's just really -- I guess we're close to Geneva, but we're kind of in the middle of this lake and still everybody comes to watch us play golf. It's fun for us to play in front of the crowds and I think it's fun for them to come watch.

I always love coming here. It's so peaceful. It's so beautiful. I think that's why everybody keeps coming back and just love playing here in France.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you three for coming in. Good luck this weekend and good luck next week as well.

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