home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


May 22, 2022

Will Zalatoris

Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA

Southern Hills Country Club

Flash Quotes

JOHN DEVER: Good afternoon welcome back to the 2022 PGA Championship here at Southern Hills, Tulsa, Oklahoma, we are joined by Will Zalatoris who carded a 1-over par 71 today, finishing runner-up in our PGA Championship, losing in a playoff.

Will, an incredible day. Incredible number of ups, a few downs and some extra holes. Maybe you can take us through your emotions, most especially on the back nine and how you got here today.

WILL ZALATORIS: Yeah, you know, I actually thought that tee ball on 18 went in the water so the fact I was able to get into a playoff was huge. I fought like crazy all day. I thought -- I really thought I needed to make a few birdies 12 through 15, and just was barely missing on the edges and speed got off a little bit.

I had a lot of putts uphill breaking a foot and a half, and they were just so hard to hit especially out here because you know they can run away from you.

Pretty proud of the result that I had. I think yesterday was really the day that looking back on it, I was pretty frustrated with. The first nines holes I thought was a really good experience, especially going.

Forward. Especially after missing the cut last week, I'm obviously pretty proud to be sitting in this position considering Saturday, never thought I would have been standing here.

I always felt like I was one, two, three back and then once I saw Mito hit in the water on 18, I know that putt that I was going to have on 18 was probably to get into a playoff. So I will bottle that putt on 18 for the future.

So pretty excited where my game is at for sure and like I said earlier, I know I'm going to get one. Just a matter of time.

JOHN DEVER: When you're in the final group as you were today and you're flipping to the playoff, how tough is that? Does time go fast? Are you shellshocked? How does that all play through in that mind in what is a relatively short amount of time?

WILL ZALATORIS: I'm actually really glad I had the experience from San Diego.

I got on on 18 and was turning right back around going straight into the playoff, and it was a blur. This one I made sure that I gave myself some time to try to take everything a little bit slower walk slow, kind of soak in, be present with where I'm at as opposed to everything just kind of coming at you.

So hey, I'll play those holes at 1-under any day of the week and J.T. happened to play in two. I hit a great putt on 17. We just under read it.

Like I said, hats off to J.T. He's been due for a while to get another win, let alone a major. So, excited for him.

Q. Can you just walk me through the putts on 17 and 18 that essentially got you into the playoff, and what you were feeling standing above those and did you know kind of where you stood on the scoreboard at that point?

WILL ZALATORIS: Yeah, I did. I always know where I'm at, whether it's Thursday or Sunday. I knew that I needed to go, especially after messing up on 16, I knew I needed to go 3-3 to win for sure, 3-4 probably to get into a playoff. That was just a really -- 3-3 would have guaranteed a playoff, let alone an outright win.

But I knew I needed those putts. Like I said, those are putts that you keep in the memory bank for the future.

Q. The shot on 6, the one that resulted in the shot from the cart path, I saw you put your head in your hands and drop your club. But walk me through, what you were feeling in that moment? What were your expectations for how the next few holes would play out?

WILL ZALATORIS: That was just bizarre. You know, that's in off the right. We just had to have caught just a random down gust. I can hit the ball far but I can't hit a 5-iron 235. It just was a very bizarre wind. It's not like I pulled it and I rode the wind or anything.

If anything, that was a push on my line and obviously got a firm bounce but that up-and-down was the best up-and-down I've ever had. So it was from there on, you know, that was a pretty good momentum boost, honestly, even though it was bogey.

7 is just a tough hole and when I made that par putt on 8, I knew I was feeling really good about things.

Q. I'm going to guess it's pretty rare to play the final round of a major with a college teammate. Was that of any benefit to you, or do you guys know each other so well that it didn't matter at all?

WILL ZALATORIS: Even his caddie, Scott, we all went to college together. It was a fun day. Obviously will remember this day forever. But being able to share it with Cam is pretty col, too. We roomed together when we were -- for tournaments, you know, pretty much every event I played at Wake, I was pretty much staying with him.

So it was a lot of fun. It's a good added comfort level. I've played with obviously a bunch of world No. 1s and to me, it's the same but you know, playing with a buddy and being able to crack jokes and especially since we have all known each other for seven, eight years, so it was a lot of fun.

Q. You play the game long enough, you're going to have a tough finishing hole. For what Mito went through in a major, do you feel for him at all?

WILL ZALATORIS: Yeah, he played unbelievably well this week. This 18th hole is one of the toughest finishing holes in all of golf. You know, hats off to him for playing so well, and it just shows you between Cam, Mito and myself, we all really came from the same Korn Ferry class where in one year obviously all three of us are contending in a major.

He's an incredibly solid player tee-to-green and on the greens, so he's going to be a force to be reckoned with in the future.

Q. So they were saying not only that you're a young player, but now you're a young major contender. You showed it Augusta, you showed it here; you can win, or you get close to that. Is there anything special about the majors that makes you play like this?

WILL ZALATORIS: Yeah, they are just exciting. There's only four a year and I think, you know, I wish I could give you a better answer than, you know, we've only got four a year and I think it's been a dream of mine to win a major since I was a little kid.

You know, it's never going to be world No. 1 or anything like that. It's been to win a major. I grew up when I lived in San Francisco, my dad was a member at California Golf Club, and there's a shrine for Ken Venturi in there with his U.S. Open trophy. There's some of Ben Hogan's stuff in there. Being able to see that at a young age, and say, hey, I want to get one of those. Seeing Jordan do it when I was in college and obviously Scottie now. You know, I think playing in these events, you need a lot of results, and at times you may be out of it but I know for sure I'll get one.

Q. Can you talk about the generation, with Mito, do you feel that that generation has been with you forever and you guys are going to do --

WILL ZALATORIS: Well, I have to, I kind of have to check myself sometimes because I feel like I'm playing junior golf and college golf all over again playing with Scottie. Scottie, Mito, even J.T., we've been playing together for almost ten years. First time I played with J.T. I was 13 in AJGA. I laugh at it because I feel like we're playing -- obviously this is a make and this is the highest level but we've been playing together forever.

So it's super fun to see. It's very motivating obviously when you see your peers do it because we've all played together since junior golf. Like I said, it's exciting and I know I'm going to get one.

Q. In terms of playing under pressure, do you like playing under pressure? How do you like your game when you're playing pressure moments like these?

WILL ZALATORIS: Yeah, I love it. If I didn't like it, I would probably need to find a new career, right. It's the same thing, when people say, man, what's it like to play in front of the crowds and the joke I tell people is, don't forget about the 10 million at home.

Even going through COVID with no fans, still, it the same pressure. I think it's something every kid obviously when they are on the putting green, the last putt's to win the Masters, whatever it is, PGA Championship, and that's what you practice for.

That's why at home, you know, when I'm playing with guys that obviously are Dallas, we're playing money games -- of course I want to beat them and I want to get in their pocket but it's not about the money. It's about hitting shots under pressure that will resemble to come out here just to make this a little bit easier.

But I love it. This is what you live for.

JOHN DEVER: Thanks for the insights all week long. We'll see you again soon.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297