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June 2, 2017

Anna Nordqvist

Galloway, New Jersey

Q. Leader in the clubhouse; 7-under par. What was working well for you out there?
ANNA NORDQVIST: Well, I hit the ball really well today and got a few putts going early, and then kept hitting my wedges really well. Made two good wedge shots on 18 and then 1, back-to-back birdies.

But over all I'm just really happy. Finished up good with a short birdie putt on my last.

Q. Two-time defending champion. Trying to win again this week?
ANNA NORDQVIST: Yeah, I mean, definitely. I feel like I enjoy this place, but at the same time, I don't feel like I have anything to prove here. I am just trying to take it day by day. I've been playing good for a long time now, so just tying get everything to click at once.

Happy with my start and looking forward to the rest.

Q. What's it like to come back here 12 months later and just really pick up where you left off last year? Familiarity of this place must agree with you.
ANNA NORDQVIST: Yeah, I was here a couple weeks ago for the media day. It's just nice. Kind of get to watch what happens behind the scenes and how much work goes into this tournament.

Just been amazed with how much ShopRite gives back to the community and how much the community is involved here. Definitely feels like coming home. I have a lot of friends here. One of my good friends, Anne Marie Lewis, was actually caddying for me in the pro-am.

No, it's just good to be back and having friends and family around.

Q. You mentioned too that this course fits your eye. What is it about it?
ANNA NORDQVIST: It's a tough golf course definitely. The fescue is a little hard this year, and with the wind, you know, you're really going to have to hit solid golf shots.

The greens are pretty small and it feels like you have to give yourself quite a few opportunities to make a couple.

But, yeah, I'm happy. Lowest round I've had in a while, so definitely makes for a sweet afternoon.

Q. Obviously you have good feelings here, but when you come out and birdie the first three holes, are you kind of like, Here we go again? I'm back in my element here?
ANNA NORDQVIST: Well, I mean, starting with birdie, birdie, birdie obviously was a great feeling this morning. I hit some really good shots. So I was just happy to get it going early and make the turn a couple under, and then just keep going from there.

Yeah, it's just a place I really enjoy and makes me happy to come back.

Q. Do you feel any different on the first tee here? Just have more confidence? Feel more comfortable?
ANNA NORDQVIST: No, I seem to have a few more spectators here. (Laughter.) I enjoy all the fans and I enjoy everyone coming out and supporting me.

Q. I know you had nine birdies. Any great saves out there today?
ANNA NORDQVIST: No. I mean, I hit most of the greens out there. Bogeyed 3. Actually didn't hit that bad of a hybrid, but seems like if you get a little bit into the grain on the fairway - and I had pretty bad lie there in the fairway - just came out a little left and I had to take an unplayable, which wasn't the best. Everyone was able to reach it today, but I feel like I recovered well from there.

Q. Birdied nine holes today, half of the holes, and you started where you left off with another 64. Why is this place so magical for you?
ANNA NORDQVIST: I don't know. I just like the way I can hit the golf ball here. You really have to think your way through. The wind started to blow a little bit there at the end.

It just really fits my eye. I have so many good memories here obviously. It almost feels like home now with a lot of supporters and a lot of friends here.

Q. You talked about the last few tournaments not feeling it with your putter. Is it a fact of just coming to a course you know so well that got it going again?
ANNA NORDQVIST: Yeah, started off with three birdies today. Made a good 10-footer on the 1st and a good putt on the 2nd.

But, yeah, feel like I've been hitting it really well the last couple weeks. Just haven't really been putting well since Phoenix. Seems to me a long time ago.

But started to get a couple rolls going for me today. Had a lot of opportunities and a lot of good putts that didn't go in, too, but my wedge game was really good today and I putted a few short ones.

Q. You talked about making a few changes, trusting yourself more, taking ownership of your game, and also a little bit of a philosophical look at enjoying the present. How would you say you've changed in the last few months and even the last eight years you've been on this tour?
ANNA NORDQVIST: Yeah, this is my ninth year on tour, so I feel like I'm getting a little more experience.

The biggest difference this year is I've been happy on and off the course. I have fewer people around me so I am just trying to do my own thing a little bit more.

Kyle and I have been working for a year and a half now and seem to be doing our thing. I'm just comfortable doing that. So just less noise around me, and I can go out there and enjoy and trust myself.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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