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August 18, 1997

J.J. Henry


CRAIG SMITH: Why don't you just get us started. Clearly Dubsdread is the more difficult of the two.

J.J. HENRY: Yeah, there's no doubt. I tried to play conservative off the start. I parred my first three holes. I bogeyed four, birdied five, bogeyed six, birdied seven and eight to make the turn at 1-under. And then on the back nine, I birdied 11 and 18. All pars on the back. So I really hit it well today. I mean, hit a lot of fairways, which is a key out here. The rough is really -- if you hit it in the rough, it's a half-shot penalty. I hit some 3-woods off the tee where there were holes. Where I could be aggressive, I was. I made probably about a 4-footer for birdie on 11, and I birdied 18. I made about a 5-footer on 18. So it wasn't like I was making, you know, all kinds of putts. I hit it pretty solid today.

CRAIG SMITH: And the other one on the front side was?

J.J. HENRY: Let's see. I birdied 5 from about 10 feet, and I birdied 7 from about 12 feet and 8 from about 12 feet. So I didn't really -- I had some other good opportunities, but I'm very, very happy with 69.

Q. What did you hit into 18?

J.J. HENRY: 18, I hit a driver and a 9-iron, just right at the hole, to about 5 feet right at the hole. I had a nice little right-to-left downhill putt and knocked it right in.

Q. We've been having kind of record rains here over the weekend. Now, that was more north, but I'm wondering, you obviously were here over the weekend to play the course a little bit?

J.J. HENRY: Yeah. One of my strengths is I hit the ball fairly long, so it works to my advantage out here. You know, if I'm able to keep it in the fairways, I'm going to have not so much a shorter iron but shorter than many people in the field. So it was wet out there, and it played a lot more difficult. But I felt if I could keep it in the fairway, it would work to my advantage.

Q. Was it extra thick? What's happened here in the last couple days?

J.J. HENRY: It's very thick, and with the rain and the moisture, it was even thicker. The grass would really grab the club because it was so wet and moist, especially early in the morning before it started to dry out.

Q. I don't know much about you beyond the name and the score. Are you in school?

J.J. HENRY: Yeah. I go to TCU. I'll be a senior at TCU this year. I was like honorable mention All-American '96, and I won the Connecticut Amateur in '94 and '95.

Q. Wasn't it TCU that won the college tournament over at the Kemper Lakes a couple years ago? Were you on that team?

J.J. HENRY: We won Golf World's tournament this year, and we also won the WAC (Western Athletic Conference), and we were ranked, I want to say, third in the country.

Q. Did you play in the tournament, the Northwestern hosted tournament, not NCAA?

J.J. HENRY: No, we never played in that one. We played in the Preview which is at Conway Farms last year.

Q. You won that one?

J.J. HENRY: We didn't win that.

Q. You were there?

J.J. HENRY: Yeah. Oh, yeah.

Q. Okay.

CRAIG SMITH: How does this feel?

J.J. HENRY: Yeah, it's great.

CRAIG SMITH: When you were getting up this morning and going to have to play a more difficult golf courses, did you have a number in mind?

J.J. HENRY: Not really. I was going to take one shot at a time, and like I said, just hit the fairways. I actually got a new set of irons about a week and a half ago -- two weeks ago, I switched clubs, and it's really made a world of difference for me. I don't know if it's -- it might be confidence more than anything else. But I got some new irons, and I really feel comfortable with them, and I feel like I can hit it a lot closer. It's worked good for me.

End of FastScripts....

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