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September 22, 2016

Ellen Port

Nashville, Tennessee

THE MODERATOR: We're here with the 2016 Senior Women's Amateur Champion, Ellen Port. She has won her seventh USGA Championship to go along with the 1995, 1996, 2000, 2011 Women's Mid-Amateur Championships, and the 2012 and 2013 Senior Women's Am Championships.

So congratulations, Ellen.

ELLEN PORT: Thank you.

THE MODERATOR: How does it feel to win your seventh USGA Championship?

ELLEN PORT: Fantastic. Always great to win a USGA event.

THE MODERATOR: What was the match like today? Very close match until you won a couple holes on the back nine.

ELLEN PORT: Yep. Andrea started off with a birdie, so game on. I threw mine in there about ten feet or so and she put it to about four or three feet, and I just missed my putt. I kind of had the reads going pretty well but didn't have the speed with it.

So I was 1-down from the getgo, and then we kind of traded holes. Traded holes for a while, and I knew it was going to be that kind of battle. She would hit a great shot when she needed one and I would hit a good shot or a putt when I needed one.

I think the spectators would say it was really a fun match to watch, and I think the people watching back home were probably very nervous.

THE MODERATOR: Sure. One of the highlights of the match was when you both made birdie on the 12th hole. You putted first from, what, about 30 feet or so?

ELLEN PORT: Right. I don't know if it was quite that far, but it was definitely one of those ones where it was a double-breaker and I finally said, Just hit it right of the hole.

I just kind of watched the ball go. It just seemed like it took forever to get to the hole and it dropped in. There was such a nice crowd around watching us today that you could hear the roar, and then of course Andrea put it in right on top of me.

THE MODERATOR: Right. The only other time you played against her in a USGA Championship, it was 20 years ago at the 1995 Mid-Amateur.

ELLEN PORT: Yes. I know we played one other time, uh-huh.

THE MODERATOR: Do you remember anything from that match?

ELLEN PORT: I remember she's feisty and fun to play with and has a great spirit about her. I've known her for year. I think won that, didn't I?

THE MODERATOR: Yes, you did, because you won the championship.

ELLEN PORT: Yeah, and so I do remember playing her. Always fun to play Andrea.

THE MODERATOR: What else do you remember from the first championship you won?


THE MODERATOR: From '95, your first of seven.

ELLEN PORT: That was the one at Essex, right?


ELLEN PORT: I remember -- well, I like this area. I just remember - as a lot of people, they wonder if they're ever going to win. I played well, really well. I played Martha Leach and got off to an unbelievable birdie, birdie, birdie, birdie, eagle start and she fought her way back in.

I played so many of my good friends in that. I remember hitting a shot off a (indiscernible) when I had to win it, which is something I had been working on.

So I just think it's been fun to see my game progress. I also remember Walter Angel, that there was one man that sat on the same hole every day. I actually corresponded with him over the years.


ELLEN PORT: Uh-huh, yeah.

THE MODERATOR: Great. So what does it mean to be tied with seven USGA Championships with Ann Sander and Carol Semple Thompson, two of the biggest names in the game?

ELLEN PORT: Yes, it's mind boggling. I am definitely not in that league. I started a little later playing with them, and they're both good friends of mine. I've enjoyed meeting them. Carol drummed me the first time I played in an event, in the Western. She beat me 6-5 and I talked the whole time. I just wanted to learn. She was a legend. Sat down and had lunch, and is that kind of started our relationship. I've learned a lot from her and respect her.

And Ann and I have corresponded over the years, and they're just amazing. It's a real honor.

THE MODERATOR: You're in a realm that's very hard to get to.


THE MODERATOR: Your match play record and finals results, 7-1, is the best other than Tiger with 6-0.

ELLEN PORT: Yeah. I been thinking about that. Getting to the finals and being fortunate enough to finish it. I know in the Mid-Am with Kathy Hartwiger, you work so hard to get here that it's really special when you can finish it off. Yeah.

THE MODERATOR: Joanne Carter, have you ever met Joanne?

ELLEN PORT: I've played -- I met Joanne Carter and have played with her. Ginny Ortwein is a dear friend of ours down at the club they belong in Florida, and my Curtis Cup year Jenny had me down to play in the four-ball I a had a lovely round with Joanne and Ginny. Oh, my goodness. I love that woman.

She's a character and a great golfer. So I have had the pleasure of meeting Joanne and playing one round of golf with her.

THE MODERATOR: Return to your team next week.

ELLEN PORT: Yep. Tomorrow. We're on the road again. On the road again. Illinois-Wesleyann. We are off to a good start; won our first tournament. We got second to the national champions. Lost by only two.

My team has been texting me. They've been having way more fun at practice since I've been gone. My captains have been in charge and they have a trick shot video that they created, so I think they're having a lot of fun while coach has been gone.

Both my employers, I wouldn't be sitting here if they had not agreed and allowed me to play and continue to compete. I'm very grateful.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you very much.

ELLEN PORT: Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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