May 28, 2021
Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
Southern Hills Country Club
THE MODERATOR: Welcome back to the 2021 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship. We're here at Southern Hills Country Club, Tulsa, Oklahoma. We're joined by Rocco Mediate. Who has played about 27 holes or so today. 1-under par in his second round. He's 3-under par for the championship. If you were a baseball player you would be a closer. You closed out your round really well today, didn't you.
ROCCO MEDIATE: Yeah, it was good. You just got to, there's going to be some things you do out here that aren't good and get in places you can't recover from, which I did a few of those today and everybody does, it's just the certain places you can't go and I stayed away from after the first two holes, because I hit it in places you can hit it in the first two holes from the middle of the fairway. A little mud but not bad. It was okay. But yeah, just trying to get in. I love this place. I couldn't wait to get here. So I'm glad this is happening so far. It's just so much fun.
Q. How big a bonus is it birdieing 16 and 18?
ROCCO MEDIATE: Oh, God, well 16 I hit pitched in out of the bunker -- it was terrible lie too. It was just a pop and it went in. It was ridiculous.
But 18, driver and a 4-iron to whatever, 15 feet and that was sweet, that was cool. It's one, it's my second favorite -- well might be my first on No. 2 at Riviera and here. This is one of my favorite par-4s in the world. Always loved it. Even though it's so long now. But I just have a lot of good memories here from the 2001 open and just a lot of good memories.
Q. You do see a lot of different options off that tee. How do you play it?
ROCCO MEDIATE: No options for me, I hit driver. No options. If I hit 3-wood I'm hitting another one. I hit driver yesterday from that front tee. I hit a 4-iron to that back pin because it was into the wind. Today it was north. There's no options, no.
17 was cool today. I was surprised, I figured you guys would do it on Saturday but yeah it was pretty cool.
Q. I know you only played 27 today, but I mean I know you only played nine yesterday, do you think it played tougher yesterday or do you think it played tougher today?
ROCCO MEDIATE: The wind was the same all day today pretty much. Same with yesterday. Yesterday was a little, maybe a little stronger when I started at 1:42, but it was pretty much the same. It was pretty much the same. Out of the north though No. 1 becomes, 1 becomes brutal. Length-wise. So in the practice round you're thinking, if I can hit a good tee shot I get the iron. I hit hybrid last two times I played it. So it's hard. I think a north wind is obviously the hardest wind because it's not normal. I don't know what's happening tomorrow, we'll worry about that when we get here.
THE MODERATOR: Do you got any similar tingles you felt in '16 the way you're playing?
ROCCO MEDIATE: Yeah, I went home for a few weeks and just kind of got myself together and did a few things with my golf game that I needed to do a little bit of and with Ricky Smith on the phone and then I brought Murph out and he's like my fourth son. I wanted to change something up and I did. It's like Jess my wife used to say, we all do this, we all over think everything, every single person out there does. If they say they don't they're lying. So I just tried not to and I didn't.
I hit a few bad shots, but I didn't have a, I just chose the shot I was going to hit and moved and then most of them came off. I kept looking up going, This does work, so why do you got to keep messing with it. So that's what I did. It took -- to come out here and do this on this golf course it's fantastic. Lots of confidence, whatever happens the next two days, it's going to be tough again and you got some of the best players on the planet playing here so it's just going to be fun again to go out and see, but yeah, it feels good knowing that I won one of these and if I can get in there for Sunday late, who knows.
THE MODERATOR: You got a good combination, you like the golf course --
ROCCO MEDIATE: Love this place.
THE MODERATOR: -- you won on a Kerry Haigh layout. This is a complete package for you.
ROCCO MEDIATE: It doesn't get much better than Kerry though. Even saw how he set up last week. That could have been -- not that it wasn't a nightmare, but it was a fair nightmare with that place. And the pairing was, I could have been 12-, 14-under without Billy and those guys, it was ridiculous. No, we had a ball. But most of us do out here.
Q. Did you come here knowing you loved this place or do you have to be reminded how much you love it?
ROCCO MEDIATE: No, no, no, I couldn't wait to see it. I was looking, trying to find pictures of the redo, the re -- I shouldn't say redo, the restoration we're going to call it because you can't redo these guys' stuff. If you do, there's a problem. But the restoration, it, I mean all I didn't notice anymore were trees. The other stuff obviously he did a few things to it but the trees and everything out and it's a bigger open place, which is still hard as hell. So you the trees don't need to be here to make it hard.
Q. You like the green at 7 tucked more against the --
ROCCO MEDIATE: Yeah, 7 he moved 14 across, moved more to the right because it was on the cart path basically. Same green. So which is smart because now there's room and now next year you're going to need room with all the people that are going to come out here. So I think it was great and I saw, I thought it was great Monday when I went out here and played it was right into the morning we went out and played and I'm not saying that because I happened to play two decent round, I couldn't wait to get here, it's just good.
Q. Last week Phil attributed his healthier life-style and his longer swing to way why he's had such a successful long career I was wondering if in your career you know, what specific things do you attribute to having success at your age?
ROCCO MEDIATE: Got myself in better shape over the last four, five years, dropped a whole bunch of weight and I spent a lot of time only the Versaclimber, don't know if you know what that is or not, but it's when people -- if people do hear this they will know what I'm talking about. And that's what made the 27 holes not a big deal. I wasn't very, I wasn't very tired and that I kept telling Murph, That's why I climb. You have days like this, it's wet, windy, brutal golf course. If you get tired it's going to be even worse. So I see that, but like I said, when I went home and I didn't play the last three weeks basically and I said I'm done with this for a while I'm going to figure out what and come back and that's the end of that. I'm just going to go play.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports