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August 9, 2018

Billy Horschel

St. Louis, Missouri

BILLY HORSCHEL: You want to go in and try and be aggressive, but no one went really low. I think that's -- reason being is maybe the pin locations. On the little slopes type deal, so they got little sneaky breaks in them. And then also the greens. The greens are great, but obviously we knew, as more foot traffic, they get a little bumpy and the speeds would change.

Overall, a really good day of golf. Like I said, I played really good. I easily could have shot, 6, 7, 8 under. I hit that well and hit that close. I just didn't make a lot of putts. On the first day, a couple under par within reach of the lead, I'll take it.

Q. Obviously, with the weather, you didn't have opportunities to practice. How much practice did you get on the course? Do you feel like you had enough preparation that helped you in your round today?
BILLY HORSCHEL: I played 18 holes Monday. I only planned on playing nine. I played with Jordan Spieth and Brandt Snedeker, and they were playing 18, and I decided to do it. Tuesday I was planning on playing nine and only played five holes, and I played nine holes yesterday.

The course really isn't that tricky. It's right in front of you. It's nothing -- there's not any real sight lines, you've got to get your lines off the tees and everything. It helps that the greens are sort of section greens, so you have to be aggressive to the pins because, if not, you're going to have to be putting up over bridges. I saw it like Augusta where you've got to put the ball on the right spot on the green to make birdie.

I think it's a fairly easy course to learn. I just think maybe guys are struggling with the greens reading. I know I did a little bit. Hit a lot of good putts and just didn't break or broke a little more than I wanted.

Q. (No microphone). With the root structure, did you find it a little dodgy?
BILLY HORSCHEL: I saw that Monday. I mentioned it Monday on the Golf Channel that the root structure just wasn't as good as it normally is. I knew that the winter was going a little bit longer. You guys didn't have a spring. And then summer came with the rain and the Heat. I think PGA of America has done an unbelievable job getting the course in great shape. I think the greens are really good.

Like I said, they've done a really good job of not stressing them out too early. We all know with the way the greens are, once you get a little foot traffic on them, bent greens, soft bent greens, you're going to have a lot of spike marks and a lot of other imperfections in the green.

I think overall the course is in really beautiful shape even with all the rain they've had.

Q. You get off to an early start today and go out later tomorrow. Finished under par, you feel pretty good about your start?
BILLY HORSCHEL: Yeah, I feel really good about my start. I struck the ball really well. In majors you've got to do that. You've got to hit a lot of greens, especially this week. I think tomorrow you've got to come out and be ready or willing to adjust to greens on the fly just knowing they're a little slower than others.

Just be ready to hit a lot of good putts. I may hit some spike marks that may not go in, but I feel like my game is in really good shape for the next few days.

Q. Thank you, Billy.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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