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May 19, 2022

Talor Gooch

Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA

Southern Hills Country Club

Flash Quotes


JOHN DEVER: Welcome back to the 2020 PGA championship. We're at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and we are joined by Talor Gooch. Talor opened up with a 1 under par 69. Well done, sir. Birdie on your final hole from what I see. Pretty nice cap on what I would think is a pretty pleasing first round for you today.

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, for sure. Anytime you can get around with a birdie it's good, but especially on a day like today. It's a grind out there. We played really well and we kind of got fooled on some wind directions. The wind was kind of switching throughout the day, and so as y'all can tell, it's not good to miss the greens in some spots, so it makes it really hard to get aggressive when the wind is flipping around.

Fortunately we finally had a wind on my last that wasn't a cross wind, it was just straight in, and it's like, okay, we're not guessing here. So I was able to get aggressive with it and hit a really good one, and was fortunate to finally make a putt, so it was a good way to end.

Q. Talk about 16 first of all and how you salvaged a par there.

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, that's another example of the wind switching and swirling. We're standing there on the second shot, I think I had like 219 to the hole, and we're trying to land it 210.

Like I pulled my drive and it was going at that bunker, which it should have reached the bunker but the wind had switched so it stayed short of the bunker.

So that wind was a little bit into from the tee, so the second shot was supposed to be a little bit into as well.

I hit a 5-iron, and I thought I hit a great shot, and it just air mailed the green, flew 225 instead of 210 and I was in no-man's land, so I tried to hit the perfect shot, left it in there, and then I hooped it. It's nice when you can kind of get away with one like that.

But it's like my caddie said, he's like, you deserved a little something there because we hit too good of a second shot to end up where we ended. But that's golf, and that's why they don't paint pictures on the scorecard.

Q. You got on a straight stretch on the front nine, your back nine. Did you mean to position yourself out there on the drive or...

TALOR GOOCH: No, I was just swinging as hard as I could and I was just like -- you have to hit a hard one there to maybe knock it on in two, and so with the wind off the left I just kind of flared out right.

But I've actually seen a couple guys over there, and when I was on 3 walking past Jaco, Joaquin Niemann, he was in that same spot, and I looked at it, and I'm like, that's actually bad spot to be. Maybe subconsciously my mind put me there.

Q. Viktor talked about the cheers from the OSU fans helped him get through his day. What was it like for you and did you have family and friends able to follow you the entire way?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, for sure. This is easily the most fans I've had yet, a bunch of family, friends, and then the whole OSU family it felt like was out there. It's a dream come true to play at Oklahoma State and play a major championship here because you know the support is going to be second to none.

Anywhere we go from -- you know, whether it's Memorial that's in Columbus or whether it's Dell Match Play that's in Austin, those places are in the actual towns of the universities, and then you come here and there's 20X as many Oklahoma State fans.

So that just shows you the culture that Oklahoma State has.

Q. Talor, the leaderboard is stuffed with guys who went off this morning. Whether it's heat, wind at a place like this, I know it might change and become an element hole to hole, but is time of day going to matter more in this situation?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, yeah, for sure. Like I said, the scores -- made note of that to my caddie coming down the back nine. I was like, I don't think I've seen anyone more than 2-under in our wave right now. The scores are always going to be reflective of that.

Anytime it's windy and you get an afternoon wave, it's going to be tough, especially when it's a course like this.

Q. The 1-under this afternoon, how good is that? It was a really solid ball-striking round do you feel like?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, for sure. Again, I don't know how many under-par rounds there's going to be this afternoon, but there won't be a whole lot. For us to get an under-par round is just -- we're off to a good start.

I haven't looked too closely at the next few days of weather because as we know, things can turn on a dime here in Oklahoma. I'll just figure out the weather as we go.

But if you were to give me four rounds of under par in a row right now, I might take it and not hit a golf shot and just kind of see where that takes me because this course is not going to get any softer.

We were talking about it today. For being a major championship course the greens were really receptive, and the scores are still what they are. That just shows you how difficult it was playing today.

Q. What's your caddie's name?


Q. Last name?

TALOR GOOCH: Baker, Mal Baker.

Q. These late-afternoon winds, is that germane to just Tulsa, this area, this golf course, or is that state-wide does this phenomena happen?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, state-wide. It's one of those places where it's always windier in the afternoon. So I live about an hour and a half away from here in Edmond and play a couple courses there, and we've been saying it for the last three or four months, this has been the windiest spring, which is saying a lot for Oklahoma, because we get some wind here. It's been the windiest spring we can remember.

This week I was prepared for these types of days because it's just -- it's been like that all spring, and yeah, so hopefully in the morning we'll get a little bit of a break from it, but it's Oklahoma; who knows.

Q. You said you had plenty of experience with the wind, and you proved it today. If you had to do like a 30-second seminar on how to play with the wind, what are the main secrets or one of the main things?

TALOR GOOCH: Oh, man. It's tough. I just did a Golf Digest thing where they were asking me to explain how to flight shots, and I was like, this is why I play and I don't coach, because I just do it. I don't know. I don't explain it very well. I see windows, I see kind of where it needs to go, and I just try to get it to go there. I don't have a good answer for you there, sorry.

Q. As a whole, how is it playing out of the sand? I know obviously your chip-in came in probably not exactly your landing spot. How was it playing out of the sand today?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, it's a little bit of a guessing game at times because this stuff is a little different than what we're used to, and it's just -- I'm sure some other guys have talked about it, but the individual grains of sand, they're huge compared to the norm.

It makes it a little bit of a guessing game and it makes the bunkers really, really penal. The one that I flew in, I was not trying to land that in the hole. I got really, really fortunate there.

Yeah, it's a little bit of a guessing game and a little bit of just good fortune. That's why -- I think that's why they're a hazard. That's just part of the game.

Q. You were talking about the bunkers there on the course; what about on the practice range and how that simulates the course itself as you look on sight lines from the range?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, so when we got to the range Monday with my coach, Boyd Summerhays, we said, man, this range looks good, huh? Because normally a range doesn't have those type of bunkers that just visually simulate what you see on the course.

It's nice to get out there, and part of my pre-tournament practice, warm-up is I kind of play some holes, hit some different shots, so it really helps having those bunkering like they do here, and it just helps me kind of prepare better for what I'm about to see out there.

Q. I know in your practice round on Tuesday, I saw you on 12 actually hit a couple of bunker shots at that point. Once you got out on to the course, how much during those practice rounds were you trying to utilize those opportunities to try to get a feel for it?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, that's why it's nice to have three days on a major week, because it doesn't just take an afternoon to get comfortable on such a change. Each day almost on every hole I spent a little bit of time hitting some bunker shots and a handful of holes here and there hitting some fairway bunker shots, too.

Yeah, you can't get enough time to get really, really comfortable because it's just so different than what we're used to. But we have three days, and you've just got to try to do your best.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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