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May 23, 2008

Jeff Sluman


KELLY ELBIN: Jeff Sluman, ladies and gentlemen, in with a 3-over par 73 in the second round of the Senior PGA Championship. Jeff is at 3-over par for the two days and at this point three strokes out of the lead. Jeff, how did the golf course play this afternoon versus yesterday morning?
JEFF SLUMAN: Totally different, but still very, very difficult. The weather kept getting warmer and warmer, but we played yesterday in cold, pretty cold weather with not a whole lot of wind. And the wind was certainly up at much higher today than yesterday.
So that was problematic on some of the holes to keep it in the fairway. Which I missed a lot of fairways today. And a couple weeks leading up to this and months before that, that's been my problem. And you really can't miss too many fairways around here and honestly try and survive.
But most of them were still kind of hack out lies and then trying to make par from a hundred yards. And you're not going to do that very often.
KELLY ELBIN: Go through your card, please. Five bogeys and two birdies for the day.
JEFF SLUMAN: Let's see, on 2, I started on 10, but I'll start on 1. I hit it in the right rough. Just kind of hacked it out, hit it to about eight, 10 feet and I thought I made the putt.
4, I finally hit the fairway and laid it up nice and had a nice yardage in there and hit a kind of a gap wedge to me to maybe six feet.
6, my caddy and I were back and forth about 6 or 7-iron and we hit 7. I actually thought it was going to be a really good shot. The wind kind of held it up and it stayed up in the heavy rough, just in between the bunker and the green. I pitched, it's kind of a lottery from there. I pitched, thought I made a good pitch, ran 12 foot by and so I missed that.
7, I hit a nice 3-wood off the tee, pulled a 5-iron, the pin was on the right and kind of in and left-to-right, I had 170 yards. And it was, I just decided I would hit a big, kind of high cut 5-iron and I hit that in there about a foot, foot and a half.
10, I made bogey. Drove it in the right rough. That was my opening tee shot. Roger Maltbie went by and said, that's not a very good lie, is it?
So I told my caddie as he was walking yardage I said, just come on over here I'm going to have to hit a heck of a shot just to get it back in play. So I made bogey there.
16, that should have been a perfect driving hole for me, candidly. Even though I missed a few to the right, the wind's blowing right-to-left there and I hung it out to the right. And that was another kind of just kind of hack out lie.
So I was 80 yards short of the green and pitched that to 10 feet and hit a really nice putt that I thought I made, but it didn't go in.
18, the wind was really blowing. It was a lot harder than all three of us thought left-to-right off the tee. I had the honor and I hit what I thought was going to be a very good drive and the wind just kind of blew it in the right bunker. And that's a sand wedge out and then try and get it up-and-down. Which I wasn't able to do.
So the bogeys were, obviously, just caused by driving it in the rough. And I think everybody that's come up here will tell you do not do that here. So the golf course is set up extremely fair, once again, Kerry did a great job today, I think he's looking at the scores and probably saying to himself he doesn't have to push any tees back or do anything, the golf course is holding up. And he's doing a great job. We just got to, as players, play the hole the way we're supposed to play it.
KELLY ELBIN: For the day Jeff hit just seven of the 14 fairways. Open it up for questions.

Q. Can you just talk about how you feel about your position, even though you struggled with the driver, you got to take your medicine out there and you ended up okay.
JEFF SLUMAN: I mentioned yesterday that I thought whoever wins this event is probably going to have one round like this. It's very difficult and in any event, let alone an event of this magnitude that's set up as difficult as it is to go out and play four beautiful rounds and drive the ball in the fairway every, almost every hole.
So hopefully that was my one round like this and I haven't really shot myself out of the tournament, which is ultimately what you want to do on a day like today when you really don't have it, you don't want to play yourself so far out of the tournament that you got no chance. I was able to accomplish that.

Q. Yesterday you talked a little bit about being a little bit nervous in front of the hometown fans. Were you a little more relaxed today?
JEFF SLUMAN: Probably a little more ill at ease today than yesterday. I just kind of got out there and I just didn't have it. I didn't feel comfortable the first couple of holes. Then kind of settled in, but still didn't hit as many quality shots as I did yesterday, which I needed to do, obviously, today.
But I was once again just a little jumpy, a little ill at ease at the start and hopefully I'll be a little more calm tomorrow. At least I made it to the weekend finally in Rochester, so goal number one was accomplished.

Q. I was going to ask, Mark O'Meara shot 66 today and then said he would take par if somebody gave me 70 the last two days. And --
JEFF SLUMAN: He's a smart man, isn't he?

Q. Do you feel that way? You mentioned how it's set up, even for the weekend, is par a good score?
JEFF SLUMAN: I haven't looked at the weather forecast but if it just, even though it's going to be warmer, certainly if it continues to blow like this, we have got all the golf course we will ever need out there and par is going to be a heck of a score.

Q. Looking at when you went out on the tee and you knew that you probably knew Mark O'Meara shot that 4-under, was it mind boggling that somebody could shoot a 4-under on this course?
JEFF SLUMAN: Not really.

Q. Did you think that maybe you could get there?
JEFF SLUMAN: You're going to have to play very, very well to do that and obviously Mark did. I don't know what his stats were, but I guarantee you he didn't miss many fairways. And I'm sure from there it's really the whole key to Oak Hill, in my opinion, the way it's set up now. If you can drive it in the fairway, it's not easy from there, but you got a chance. If you don't, you've got very little chance to offer the course of four days, to play very well.
So do you have any idea how many fairways he hit?
KELLY ELBIN: I think he hit 8 fairways.
JEFF SLUMAN: See, one more than me. He must have caught some good lies. But you shoot 66 out here, I don't care whatever he says, he played awfully well.

Q. I walked with you for a few holes and it seemed like you had everybody almost everybody pulling for you. Does that make you feel good?
JEFF SLUMAN: Well, it's a unique experience that they're all pulling for me when you're playing with Greg.
That doesn't happen very often. That's only going to happen if you're in your hometown. And it was a great crowd again today. The people from Rochester are supporting this event tremendously and just showed yesterday in the terrible weather that they were all out in force. So Greg and Fuzzy both noticed it and commented to me how amazed and impressed they were that that many people were out here.
KELLY ELBIN: Jeff Sluman at 3-over par.
JEFF SLUMAN: Thank you.

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