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April 14, 2019

Xander Schauffele

Augusta, Georgia

THE MODERATOR: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, and we are pleased to welcome Xander Schauffele to the interview room. Xander finished second, tied for second, tied for your best finish in a major championship. You shot a final round 68 to record a four‑day total of 12‑under par, 276. You completed rounds of 73, 65, 70 and 68.
Xander, congratulations on a tremendous run this week. In just your second Masters appearance, can you share with us your thoughts on spending most of the day near the top of the leaderboard?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: It was an awesome experience, first off. Just what I witnessed, I know it's what everyone is going to talk about; that's why this room's barely full. I know where everyone's at. It's hard to really feel bad about how I played, just because, you know, I just witnessed history. It was really cool coming down the stretch, all the historic holes, Amen Corner, 15, 16, Tiger making the roars.
I was trying to push myself, but I feel like I got a very full, fully‑filled Masters experience here in my second year.

Q. Where is the balance between disappointment at not winning and satisfaction?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: I think this situation is very unique. I'm not one bit sad. I told my caddie on the last hole that we just proved to ourselves that we can win on this property, and you know, I started with a 73, so I was very behind the 8‑ball and clawed my way back.
If I just have a little more experience‑‑ even coming down the stretch, I had a couple putts that I've never hit on property and I was sit there laughing with my caddie because I hit it six feet past or left it five feet short, and I'm sitting there grinding on my 70th hole to try to not three‑putt under the gun, but I'm sitting there, I'm like, I've never seen this putt before.
With what we just witnessed with Tiger coming off 18, it was a throwback, seeing him in red in the mock turtleneck. It's what I saw as a kid, and it was just really cool to know him a little bit now and congratulate him coming off 18.

Q. Is there a difference, getting in contention at Carnoustie, wide‑open links, versus when he gets into contention here at Augusta, what the crowd and scenes were like?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: The crowd was incredible. I think it just speaks volumes to where his game is at, contending at Carnoustie and playing here. Obviously he has a few more rounds under his belt here on property, but it's just‑‑ like I said, it was sort of a very‑‑ I saw him win at THE TOUR Championship, along with everyone else, and I saw him make history again today.
I feel incredible about where my game is at, and I'm just so happy for him.

Q. I know you weren't in his group with him today, but especially on the back nine, what was it like being on this course, on this Sunday, as he makes history? What was it like from your perspective?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: Like a dream, honestly. It's what I watched as a kid. It's what I watched growing up. Just everything about it, and for me to be a part of it and, you know, give it a good run, you know, I knew once I was on 17 and I heard a lot of roars, I knew he was on 16 and I knew he used the ridge properly like he should. I knew that my work was pretty cut out.
It was an incredible experience today.

Q. You had the lead alone for I think maybe a minute or two?

Q. But at least you had it. Wonder how that felt; if that felt any different than the way you felt the rest of the day?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: Yeah, you know, I knew that putt was for the lead for the moment. Obviously the leaders were going into 13, so I knew being ahead that I ‑‑ and then once I parred 15, I knew I was in a bit of trouble, as well as 16, because the greens are a little soft and very gettable.
But I did have my 30 seconds in the sun with the lead and it was a really cool feeling, and like I said, it just proves to my team and I that we can contend and that we can win on this property.

Q. Did you see it on the leaderboard when you were leading, and what went through your head when you did see it?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: I knew where we were at on the course, I knew I had the lead at that moment. Like I said, 13, I knew a birdie was going to come there and 14, if you hit it in the fairway, it's a very gettable 15, and once again, 15.
I didn't feel like I got too nervous or too out of shape, because I knew you had to only look forward at that point.

Q. At a very early point in your career, you've now been in this situation twice, coming into a press conference having finished second in a major. Does that exceed your expectations of where you thought you would be at at this point?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: I don't think so. Obviously to do it in this fashion is sort of‑‑ if I told you I had the 54‑hole ead and I just looked up at the end, would be more of a surprise. I came from an 8‑under‑‑ I was at 8‑under this morning and shot 4‑under today. I came from a position that I am very familiar with, so I was quite familiar most of the day, even though there was a lot of ruckus going on.

Q. Would you consider, based on what we've seen today, wearing a mock turtleneck?
XANDER SCHAUFFELE: I actually told Tiger at Torrey that I think they are hideous (laughter). He laughed and told me a few other words after that. But I did give him credit. I said he's had a little bit of success in that turtleneck, but I can promise you that probably half a million are going to sell tomorrow.
THE MODERATOR: Xander, congratulations on a great tournament and we look forward to seeing you next year.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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