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April 28, 2017

Jordan Spieth

Ryan Palmer

Avondale, Louisiana

Q. I told you 12-under at the beginning of the week, you probably would have felt pretty good, but I know matching a 66 with a 66 today was a lot of work.
RYAN PALMER: It did. I know my part was a little disappointing the way I hit my irons today. It was one of my worst of the year, I think. But I had some great chips to give him the chance to make some putts. Drove it well again, but to make that last putt on the last hole, good momentum booster.

Q. Jordan, you're standing on the 4th tee 1-under par. What did it take for you guys to get this round in?
JORDAN SPIETH: We just saw a putt go in. The hole looked so small. It was burning right edge, left edge, short, long. Just couldn't quite match the line and speed up. I felt like I was hitting good putts and giving myself a lot of chances. I only missed a couple greens the whole day. Just couldn't get it to go in. Finally that one goes in, and we were kind of walking to 5 saying, all right, the lid is off, and Ryan hit it in there tight on 5, then we just finished strong 7, 8, 9 there, played the holes the way they're supposed to be played and got a couple putts that you'd expect us to make with two looks at it to go.

The one that Ryan made on the last was huge. Getting to 12, a little bit closer to the leaders there, within 3, a lot more doable, especially with alternate-shot tomorrow where anything can happen?

Q. Having the success you had yesterday and the way it will probably blow like it will today, what kind of confidence does that give you going into tomorrow?
JORDAN SPIETH: Yeah, we've got a great strategy on odds and evens. We really feel comfortable on those holes. Certainly off of yesterday's round, we know that we can have success in that format. We also know we need to set expectations a bit different. We had prime scoring conditions yesterday, and tomorrow it will be a bit like today or even more challenging. Anything under par in alternate-shot is a great score tomorrow, and we can make up ground. Just have to reset expectations, go out and try to hit fairways. If we drive the ball well, we're going to be in good shape.

Q. I know there's probably a non-disclosure form you had to sign before you walked out of the war room last night, but what was that experience like?
RYAN PALMER: It was awesome just to sit there -- when they had their time to pick, it was one of the longest five minutes I've ever experienced. The phone calls coming in, the deals trying to be made, listening to Coach Payton talk to his scouts and what they really wanted to do, and I think that KC kind of threw a kink in their plan. But it was pretty cool when they picked Lattimore and you could see the excitement in their eyes. It was really neat.

Q. It seemed like you did have a good finish, but it seemed like most of the round was devoid of any momentum whatsoever. How did you kind of get it going at the end?
JORDAN SPIETH: We just got the lid off. We had plenty of chances. You know, we weren't really giving ourselves two putts for birdie on each hole, which is the key to best ball. Just feel more comfortable when that's the case when one of you is going to get close to making it or make it. And that's what we did on our last five holes. It felt like we really stayed positive. Ryan kept me positive. I was getting very frustrated with myself not being able to roll any of those putts in, and he really was just kind of giving me pumps on the tees, and once the lid kind of came off, sarcastically, really enjoyed that, and just rode that momentum. Ryan's putt at the end on that last hole, too, was a big putt for us. We get to 12-under, break that 11-under tie, get one stroke closer to the lead with an opportunity in best ball to get to alternate-shot to make up shots today.

Q. Tomorrow it's supposed to be windy, and alternate-shot. Do you have a target score or just kind of hang on for dear life tomorrow?
RYAN PALMER: I think tomorrow we just kind of stick to our game plan, but obviously it's going to take some different golf tomorrow, obviously, with the winds that are coming in. I think if we go out there tomorrow and break par and I think we'll have a good chance of getting closer to the lead if not leading. It's going to be difficult for sure. Hopefully I can get my iron play back in shape. I think where our short games are now, if we hit the ball well tomorrow, we're going to have a chance.

Q. 12-under heading into the weekend. You obviously have to feel good about that.
RYAN PALMER: Yeah, coming into the week, we had some scores in mind, but obviously yesterday's round, the weather was perfect, and we were able to get away with a good round. Today was just a grind. I know Jordan hit it well and just could not get the lid off of the hole, and once he made that putt on 4, I guess, that opened it up, and then I was able to birdie 5, and the finish for us was huge, now only three back instead of four or five shots back, so excited where we stand.

Q. Talk about your expectations for the format this weekend. Will you change your strategy at all?
JORDAN SPIETH: Adjustments here and there, but we're in a great position. I think if we were to obviously double our score, which would be difficult to do, but I think if we double our score on the weekend, that's a winning score. We've done what we need to do halfway through. If we can hold it together tomorrow, post something under par, maybe take advantage on Monday, with the potential weather coming Sunday, if we get up there around 20 or so under, I think that's kind of where we're looking right now, but we cannot make that up tomorrow. We're going to need to keep our head down and grind tomorrow.

Q. The TOUR yesterday handed out its first slow play penalty in 22 years. I'm wondering if you find that surprising.
JORDAN SPIETH: A bit, yeah, I didn't know that.

RYAN PALMER: Never heard it.

JORDAN SPIETH: Yeah, we didn't hear.

Q. 22 years is --
JORDAN SPIETH: It's a long time, yeah.


Q. Campbell and Carballo.
RYAN PALMER: Oh, European Tour.

Q. Each got one bad time, which is one shot for the team.
RYAN PALMER: Oh, here they did. Sorry, I didn't know the name.

JORDAN SPIETH: I know the TOUR does as much as they can to not have to do that, and I'm not sure what the circumstances were, so it's hard to necessarily comment on.

Q. How was the experience of the draft? I know it had to be pretty exciting to watch the process.
RYAN PALMER: It was. It was something I've never seen before. I've always wondered how it worked, and it's funny, if you've seen the movie Draft Day, it's pretty close to that. Just watched the phone calls coming in, the deals trying to be made, those last three, four minutes deciding who they want, and I think they were really big into Mahomes, but when they got Lattimore, you could see the excitement in all the scouts' eyes, Coach Payton's eyes. It was pretty cool for us.

Q. How much as teammates do you rely on each other out there? Seemed like after the putts started falling --
JORDAN SPIETH: You can feel it. You also want to feel like you can jump start (indiscernible) for the team when you've got opportunities. It just seemed like each one of us had different moments today, and our front nine and then around the turn there where we could have jump started the momentum for the team, and neither one of us could capitalize on it, and it's disappointing. It's more disappointing sometimes than it is just playing yourself. But I felt like we did a really good job of the other one coming in, you can't apologize and you can't say my bad, or you've got to pay the other one. I think that's useful. I think we're both coming in and being positive when the other is a little off. For me, it was just I couldn't get the lid off the hole with the putter, and Ryan was just trying to find the club face with the irons, and I felt like we both were kind of picking each other up that led to that strong finish. We very well could be out of this tournament right now if it weren't for the last hour and a half.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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