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March 23, 2019

Jason Kokrak

Palm Harbor, Florida

Q. What a day, a day to remember, your second hole-in-one in competition. I can't believe this but you had actually forgotten the first one at the RBC Canadian Open. Take us through today's and the emotion of holing out at 15 for the ace.
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, I did forget about it. It was five -- four, five, six years ago, so it wasn't just last year. So, yeah, it was one of those holes where we knew we couldn't hit one more club to get it back there and we had 194 to cover into the down grain spot, 8-iron was probably pushing 190 and I flushed it, so it carried just far enough and took a nice hop and rolled in there as I just saw just like a putt.

Q. What about your play overall on the back nine, able to get it to 5-under for the day and 7-under for the championship?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, it was good. I kind of struggled around the front. Didn't hit very many good tee shots with the driver. Started to settle in, I hit a good one on 10, made a nice putt there. Had a short one on 11, but greens are starting to get baked out a little bit, they're rolling nice, true, fast, but didn't make that one. But settled in, hit some quality iron shots coming in.

Q. Last year you finished in the Top-10 tied for 8th. Picking right up this year with a chance, back in contention again.
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, I like this golf course. As I said earlier, it's a good, hard golf course, there's nothing quirky about it, it's right there in front of you, you just got to hit quality golf shots. You hit good ones, you're rewarded, you can make birdies, but if you hit bad ones you can make bogeys.

Q. Your consistency the last few weeks or this whole year, talk about that.
JASON KOKRAK: I've been working with Drew Steckel the last year, year and a half now, and just kind of cleaning up a few things just getting more consistent, not playing as much of a big draw. So I think that and in conjunction with working with Josh Gregory on my short game, my short game's gotten immensely better and I think that it shows with the consistency of the way I've played all year long. So it's been nice to play like that, but it's just a golf course you got to stay patient on and I'm going to continue to do what I've been trying to do, which is just hit the ball straight and with a little more consistency and good aggressive swings with conservative targets.

Q. Did you think over six holes today that you would go into tomorrow with a shot to win this thing?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, any time you're anywhere near the lead on this golf course, you got a tough finish here, it's a tough opening nine, there's a couple gettable par-5s out there, but there's hard shots on this golf course and if you get it out of position you can make bogeys fast. But overall I think you can be three, four, five shots out at this golf course and really make some noise if you get it going early.

Q. Had you had much success on 13 in previous years?
JASON KOKRAK: It's a hard par-3 because the first part of it is all into the grain and if you land it there it pretty much hits and stops. I did it yesterday to kind of the middle right pin. It was an up tee, one less club and I flew it into the into the grain part and it hit and actually rolled off the green to the front. But if you hit the down grain spot it kind of hits and takes all the spin off and it rolls out 15, 18 yards. So it's a hard hole, but it's a hole that fits me because I hit it high and I normally hit one less club than most people.

Q. When you generally play pretty well here, so when you come here, are you just confident from the very beginning?
JASON KOKRAK: Well, yeah, there's a lot of holes out here where I can take out some of the trouble. Sometimes -- well this week it's been into the wind on No. 1, normally that bunker on 1 isn't in play. I can take it over the bunker on the second par-5 there. I can take it over number 11. But it's just a golf course that suits my eye, it's a lot of right-to-left shots off the tee, a lot of irons, so I'm able to hit 5-irons off tees and 4-irons off tees and get it in the fairway, get it in position and then be aggressive because I'm in the same part of the fairway as most of the guys, but with one maybe two less clubs.

Q. 2-under through two rounds, obviously today was a big difference, what was the difference for you?
JASON KOKRAK: I think I holed some nice putts early for par on 3 there after a bad bunker shot and a bad second shot. But it's just one of those golf courses -- I didn't birdie either par-5 on the front, I missed a relatively short one on 11, so it's gettable out there, but you got to hit good quality shots, you got to be in position, you get out of position you can make bogeys.

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