November 18, 2022
Naples, Florida, USA
Tiburon Golf Club
THE MODERATOR: Here with Leona Maguire. Matched her opening 69 with another 69 today. Windy conditions out there. You're Irish. I mean, you've got to like this kind of weather.
LEONA MAGUIRE: It's tricky. You have to kind of time your shots with the gusts. I think it's a tricky start, those opening sort of five holes. Once you get through those five holes, you know there's a few chances coming your way. So you want to play steady for those opening few holes and then take your chances on the par-5s when you get them.
THE MODERATOR: I know both sides here are pretty difficult, but I feel like people struggle more on the front. Kind of up and down today. What switched when you hit the back nine?
LEONA MAGUIRE: Yeah, I played solid on the front, but holed a couple of nice putts on the back nine. Holed a nice birdie putt on 11 to kind of get me going. Hit a really nice wedge shot into 14. Nearly holed that. Nice birdie putt on 16.
I feel like the par-3s are tricky out here, especially with the way the wind is. They're sneaky long. To pick up a birdie on 16 was a nice bonus.
THE MODERATOR: Obviously all KPMG group, but kind of a Solheim Cup group too. It's kind of cool with the current captain, last year's hero. What was it like to play with Stacy today?
LEONA MAGUIRE: Stacey is great. I've looked up to Stacy for a long time. I have a huge amount of respect for her. I'm sure she was having a sneaky look at me today, but she knows what to expect at this stage. So, yeah, I mean, she'll be a great captain next summer, and she played some really solid golf out there today too.
THE MODERATOR: Finally, mindset heading into the weekend, put yourself in the mix and will be in the mix at day's end.
LEONA MAGUIRE: Yeah, there's obviously a lot of people with a lot of pressure on them this week. There's a few things up in the air, so I'm going to kind of stay under the radar, do my thing, try to give myself as many chances as possible and see what we can do over the weekend.
Q. When you look at Lydia right now at minus-12, how aggressive can you be to try on this golf course in the back nine try to chase someone down on the weekend?
LEONA MAGUIRE: I don't think it's a course you can be overly aggressive. I think it depends on where the pins are. It depends on where the wind is.
You do need to take advantage of certain holes. Especially the par-5s, there's a few shorter holes. I mean, Lydia is Lydia. I'm sure she's going to keep going, so ultimately try and shoot as low as we can over the weekend and see what happens.
Q. So you obviously took a very different route than Lydia on getting to the LPGA, but what was kind of your impression of Lydia when she was 15 and you were kind of watching what she was doing?
LEONA MAGUIRE: Yeah, she's been incredible for a long time. Played with her back in I think it was 2010 in the World Am in Argentina. She was a phenom then getting ready to turn pro. I remember her short game was incredible. A wedge shot didn't go outside 3, 4 feet. I played with her in the Olympics. She had a hole-in-one that day and won the silver medal and all that.
Yeah, Lydia is one of the best players of our generation, and to do it as long as she has is very impressive. She's just a class act, and she's one of the nicest people out on tour as well. So she's a good golfer, but she's probably an even better person.
Q. You have had a great season obviously. Have you splurged on anything? And if you were to win this one, what would you continue to splurge?
LEONA MAGUIRE: Yeah, not yet. $2 million is more money than I've ever seen in my life. Yeah, I probably would take care of my family. They've given me a lot over the years, so it would be nice to give back. I suppose it's a nice timing coming up to Christmas.
It is mine and my twin sister's birthday on November 30th, so I guess I would have to get her a pretty nice birthday present.
Q. What would you do?
LEONA MAGUIRE: I'm sure she would have some ideas.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports