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April 12, 2023

Lauren Hartlage

Ewa Beach, Oahu, Hawaii, USA

Hoakalei Country Club

Quick Quotes

Q. Lauren Hartlage here after a great first round, 3-under. You made your turn at 1-over but then really turned it on on your front nine. Birdies on four of your last five holes. What changed there for you? Where did the momentum come from?

LAUREN HARTLAGE: Yeah, beginning of the round I wasn't hitting the ball very well but I was putting very well. Made a lot of really good putts. Kind of on the back nine it got windier and I was thinking too much about my swing I think on the front and I just started to get away from the mindset of just hitting some shots, and was starting to hit it better and made a bunch of really good putts.

Q. Those birdies you had, again, the front nine, your back nine, on 5, 6, 7, and 9. Can you tell us about those holes? Any big putts there or just everything coming together?

LAUREN HARTLAGE: Yeah, 5, par-5, I hit it up there pretty close to the green in two and chipped it to like a foot, so that was pretty good.

The hole after that, hit it to about three feet, so made a good putt there.

But then 7 I made like a 40-footer for birdie, so that was a really big putt there.

Then just hit it really close on the last hole.

So it was really good to hit some good shots coming in and make those putts.

Q. When you're standing over a 40-foot birdie putt, are you thinking, I can make this? Are you thinking I lag it? What are you thinking over that?

LAUREN HARTLAGE: I've been putting so well today and so I just felt good. Honestly if I get the speed right I felt like the lines were really good, so I was just focusing on getting good speed, and it just dropped in the hole.

Q. You had a good first round today. We were chatting earlier, didn't necessarily have a good first round last year. Week's starting off better. You said this time last year you found out you had COVID.

LAUREN HARTLAGE: Yeah, I came here and was feeling okay, and then Tuesday start feeling really, really bad and ended up getting COVID and had to withdraw. So I was pretty upset. Coming to Hawai'i, super excited my rookie year, and had to go through that. So it's really nice to come back this year and start on a better note.

Q. I guess if there are places you have to be stuck with COVID, Hawai'i is not a bad spot.

LAUREN HARTLAGE: Yeah, it's a bad spot, but, yeah, not ideal. I'd rather be playing in the first tournament.

Q. Now you're here a year later, that great first round. Don't have the experience of playing in this wind. You said it might have gotten to you on the front nine. What is the challenge of Hoakalei playing into this difficult wind?

LAUREN HARTLAGE: Yeah, I think honestly, the front nine I tee'd off so early it wasn't as windy. I almost thought I need to capitalize, it's not as windy, and I was putting extra pressure on this which is what got me a little bit.

It's just you're going to have to play the wind and you might hit a shot that is good and ends up in a bad spot. You just got to stay patient and just kind of stick to your game plan.

Q. So what's the game plan now going into tomorrow?

LAUREN HARTLAGE: Going to hit a few balls on the range, get that straightened. Just kind of similar, staying patient, taking it hole by hole, and see what happens.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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