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August 27, 2006

John Kelly


CRAIG SMITH: Not that at any point did it ever get away, but is there a point that you'd like to have back, maybe right before lunch?

JOHN KELLY: Probably at 14 today, I missed like a 5 footer. I really thought I was going to make that, and I was a little bit dejected. I made a horrible stroke. That kind of drove the first nail in the coffin I think maybe.

CRAIG SMITH: He didn't give you much room to catch up this afternoon, and I imagine you were just looking for a little crack, because you didn't quit, you didn't give anything away, but he just wouldn't let you in.

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I made a great birdie on 10, and I think that cut the lead to 2 down. And you know, I thought if I could just keep hitting the ball in the fairway and using my length to an advantage, I mean, I was out driving him consistently by 30 or so yards. If I hit the fairway and put the pressure on him to hit good shots, I thought I'd have a good chance. I did that for the most part.

But I think really what did me in was the putter. I didn't make much on the greens today.

CRAIG SMITH: I want to just ask you to repeat something you had told Roger Maltbie, I don't know if you remember, about your stature prior to the week.

JOHN KELLY: Obviously I've had some success, not so much so at the national level, but I mean, this can't do anything but it I can't do anything but build on what I've done this week.

Q. You won a couple of events earlier this summer, when were those exactly?

JOHN KELLY: Missouri State Stroke Play was about a month ago. And then one tournament at Old Warson Country Club just before summer began. I think those are my two victories, at least my last two victories.

Q. Was that like a state invitational?

JOHN KELLY: It's kind of like a St. Louis points; it was actually a match play event.

Q. Where was this?

JOHN KELLY: At Old Warson Country Club.

Q. And that was earlier in the summer?

JOHN KELLY: It was like end of May, something like that, middle of May.

Q. When you came out after lunch, what was kind of going through your mind, it seemed like you kind of started out pushing your drives to the left maybe a little bit and kind of a little bit all over the course in the first part, were you a little nervous?

JOHN KELLY: I drove the ball pretty consistently. I don't know if I missed a couple fairways in the first 18, and the second 18 I did struggle with the driver a little bit. I caught some good breaks. But yeah, I didn't quite have it with the driver the second round.

Q. You're playing down most of that second 18, and he's not missing greens. At what point do you feel sort of a necessity to make birdies?

JOHN KELLY: All week all of my victories I this I came from behind at some point. So I kept trying to tell myself that, hey, you know, you've been doing this all week, maybe you can do this again hopefully.

But, you know, I've got to tip my cap off to him. He kept hitting shot after shot after shot. Just great golf. I mean, drove me crazy, but he was something else today.

Q. How tough is it to put pressure on a guy when he doesn't miss a fairway and a green?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, he consistently kept hitting great shots and he really can't do much about that.

Q. I know it's early, but can you start to think about how your life is changing a little bit just in the last eight days?

JOHN KELLY: It's going to be awesome. Playing at Oakmont next year, the Masters in April, those are opportunities that, I mean, if you had asked me a week ago, I'd throw all my money down in my bank account for that opportunity. Yeah, it's just going to be great.

Q. You decided not to go with the Missouri colors today. Is there any reason that you chose not to?

JOHN KELLY: No reason. I don't know. Why.

Q. Will your Missouri teammates bring you down to earth?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I'm just glad they came up for the weekend and showed their support. Yeah, it was great seeing them.

Q. Can you get excused from the 6:00 a.m. workout tomorrow?

JOHN KELLY: From what I hear, I hope so, because I might be falling asleep on the bench press or something.

CRAIG SMITH: Looking back, he didn't give you a lot of breaks, would you liked to have him put some of those concessions?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I wish I had been able to put a little bit more pressure on him in that regard. I mean, obviously, when you're making a bogey and just conceding, you know, a putt that, yeah, you want to have at the least, at least make him have to make a putt.

Q. What was your thinking there on the last hole with the concession?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, you know, I'm not going to have him griped over that. He outplayed me today and I thought it was just a nice gesture to end it there.

I mean, 16, I played horrible on that hole all week. So it's kind of fitting that I lost on that hole. (Laughter).

Q. What happened there previously?

JOHN KELLY: I think I may be only made one par up till today on that hole. Yeah, just I don't know what happens. It's a tough hole.

Q. Is that the first time you hit driver in the afternoon?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I needed to make birdie. That's all I was thinking at that point.

Q. In the morning round, what did you hit, 3 iron off the tee?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I didn't hit it quite right. That happens sometimes with blades.

Q. Are you glad you guys went good good on 12?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, he wasn't going to miss that.

Q. Has the lottery opened up yet for the caddie jobs next year?

JOHN KELLY: I've had a lot of requests, so I'm going to have to figure that out at some point.

Q. A lot of guys might be buying a few dinners and doing all kinds of laundry maybe, favors for you?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I'm sure something like that will happen.

Q. I think your dad's already putting in for the par 3 contest at Augusta.

JOHN KELLY: I think I can give him that for sure.

Q. Do you think this changes your stature amongst other college players going into the season then now or in general, obviously? Do you think people will have a different perception of you now?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I would think. So I can remember actually, I don't know, it was probably my sophomore year in high school, I think Matt Gogel was a guest speaker and he was saying he met Tom Watson, and Tom Watson told him that just you can't worry about what other people think about you. So I kind of thought about that. Just kind of something to think about. I think it rings pretty true. Yeah, it's nice getting recognition I guess from your peers.

Q. I'm told when you got on a launch monitor, you put some pretty interesting numbers up there. Do you remember any of them?

JOHN KELLY: I remember last summer, I think it was, I was out in a course in St. Louis and I think they said my carry was like 297 or something like that.

Q. What's your swing speed at; do you know?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I don't know offhand. But you've got to hit it a in the fairway. You can hit it a long way, but doesn't matter if you're not hitting it in the fairway.

Q. Do you always play that fast?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I'd say I play pretty quickly. I don't like to lollygag around.

Q. Was there a particular aspect of Richie's game that most impressed you today?

JOHN KELLY: He was a solid player and I could see why he's a Walker Cupper. He doesn't do a whole lot wrong. Everything's just good about that guy's game.

Q. Did you think that experience was to his advantage?

JOHN KELLY: Yeah, I mean, I felt at no point was I like, oh, I'm playing a great player, I can't beat him.

Obviously maybe he's had a little more experience than me, but I had just as much confidence as he did.

Q. Will this affect any decision on turning pro after the U.S. Open or will you stay for the U.S. Amateur?

JOHN KELLY: I plan on it. I think I'm going to stay amateur through next summer.

Q. There's a little thing called the Walker Cup coming up next September.

JOHN KELLY: It would mean the world to me. To represent your country, I hope I have the chance and I hope I can keep playing well and hopefully this at least puts me on the radar screen.

CRAIG SMITH: John, thank you very much. Congratulations on a great week. You played very well.

End of FastScripts.

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