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December 13, 2009
MARK WILLIAMS: Jerry Kelly and Steve Stricker, congratulations on your victory at The Shark Shootout. 66, 65, and 59. Pretty much led from the start to the finish. Talk about your day and give us some thoughts.
JERRY KELLY: Well, it was great. We were a very good team. It didn't seem like we were consistently in there with two really good birdie chances, but one of us always seemed it step up.
Towards the end, we both started getting real good shots in there. I think I took a lot of pressure off him at the end, which was supposed to be my job all week but I didn't do that great of a job of it until we started coming down the stretch.
Then I think he was able to free it up and knock it in there like he can, because I got him close to that spot.
Q. Were you surprised at Holmes and Perry's strategy on that hole after the tee shot there on 17?
STEVE STRICKER: Well, I wasn't able to see the lie. I just assumed that they had a decent lie where they were at there. Like I say, I don't know.
But they were up there so far. They were killing it all day long off the tees. They were 30 to 40 yards ahead of us all day long and making it look really easy.
So, yeah, I was surprised that they made par, put it that way. You know, we kind of, when we were three down, we figured we had to birdie out and throw eagle in at 17, you know, figuring they were gonna maybe make a birdie at 17 at the worst.
Knowing 18 was playing difficult, you know, our game plan was just to continue to make birdies and see what happens. It is kind of a shock, the reversal that happened there at 17. That's why you hang in there and keep doing what you do and keep plugging away. That's what we did.
Q. Steve, even saying that, staying with your game plan, at the same time your body language, neither of you looked great on 15 tee. Jerry, I think that's the right hole. I mean, does it get to you a little bit when you're three back? I think you missed birdie chance the hole before.
JERRY KELLY: I'll take that one, because that was where he really stepped up and said, Listen, it doesn't really matter. We get in there and have a chance at birdie, you never know what's gonna happen with them.
That's where he just reiterated the fact that, Let's play our game and let's make our birdies. We know we've got an eagleable hole on 17, and we can make birdies on all the rest.
We do the best at we can do, who knows what happens. We control our own destiny, and you never know what happens in the tournament. I think that's helped him a lot in the last couple years. I think he's taken the pressure off himself, where I tend to always heave more on and trying to do too much.
It really taught me a lot this week again. My hat's off to him.
Q. Where was that conversation?
STEVE STRICKER: 15.
JERRY KELLY: Yeah, just coming off 15 tee.
STEVE STRICKER: You know, we hit it in there a foot, and they're grinding -- after hitting the green in two, they're grinding over a five-footer. I just made the point that, you know, here we're in for birdie for sure and they're still grinding and they hit the green in two.
You just don't know what's gonna happen. My caddie, Jimmy, he's harped on me this year and a half that I've been with him. We just do what we do. That's all you can do: just do your own thing and see what happens. That's what we did.
We stepped it up coming down the stretch. We played great coming in. We hit some great shots and made some putts and birdies when we had to. Total team effort coming in. It was a lot of fun to play with Jerry, and he played great.
Q. You said something out on the green about learning something from Steve. Is that what you're talking about?
JERRY KELLY: That was it right there, yeah. I'd like to take that going forward now. I put myself in position an awful lot over the years and I haven't won that many. It's nice to have a little bit of a turn of focus, and maybe a change of fortunes a little bit going down the road.
Q. You talked a little bit about where you were at on 17. Kenny said they were within 100 yards on 15 and they don't make the putt and they both lipped out the putt on 16 and don't make it. You birdie and you're right there. What were you thinking on 17 then?
STEVE STRICKER: Well, when we're on 17 tee, we're thinking eagle. We said big birdie, little birdie, and let's finish it off. Our big birdie was making eagle at 17. After Jerry hit it on the green in two at 17, it totally freed me up to fire a 3-wood right at it.
That's what good teams do in an event like this. You get one guy that's solid and in play, and give yourself at least a 20- or 15-footer or 10-footer or less, whatever it may be, and then you kind of free up that last guy. Jerry did that great all week.
That's what we did really good coming down the stretch. You know, kept putting the pressure on. And like I said, we just had that mindset, and it came through.
Q. What was your yardage?
JERRY KELLY: We had 247 or...
STEVE STRICKER: 248 or 7, something like that.
Q. What did you hit?
STEVE STRICKER: We both hit 3-woods.
JERRY KELLY: Yeah, it was straight into the wind. It was good.
Q. You've both had great years, great seasons, '09 seasons. How satisfy is it to finish up your season like this?
STEVE STRICKER: Very much so. I mean, it's another feather in our cap. This is a lot of fun. We came here to have fun and to play well at the same time, and we did that.
Just this whole year has been great. It's been fun to be a part of what Jerry is doing, too. We pushed each other along. It was an easy partnership here. We get along great, and our games are very similar.
It was a lot of fun. It just happened that we won. But it's icing on the cake, really.
Q. For both of you, you're both eligible for Kapalua. Between now and then, what are you doing for the holidays?
JERRY KELLY: Shoveling snow probably. (Laughter.) I really only have two weeks before I leave. I leave the 26th of December over to Hawaii. Taking 14 family members over there on my wife's side. We're gonna have a great time.
Luckily my coach is one of those. Jim Shuman, Carol's brother, is my coach. We always go over there early to get ready for the season. Doesn't seem like there's as much of an off-season now. Two weeks before this and two weeks after. That's been my off-season, so right back on the horse.
STEVE STRICKER: Same thing. Going back home. Probably take off right around the first of the year, 31st or 1st, somewhere around there, to go over to Hawaii and play the first couple events over there.
But we'll be in Madison.
JERRY KELLY: He said he was gonna get me in the deer stand, too, so we'll see what happens. (Laughter.)
Q. With the holiday season coming along, what would you say you want Santa to give the Tour for the 2010 season?
JERRY KELLY: I'll say a -- that's a tough one, isn't it? That's pretty good. I wanted to say uneventful, but I don't mean that. I want it to be extremely exciting, and I want success for the both of us, no question about it.
You know, I think we can expect Tiger back. And we want Tiger back. I don't think as many people see it as a need basis. I think you guys see it as a need basis, but we want him back. You want to win against the best. If he's not in the field, might be that little nag in the back of your head.
Yeah, we want him back. We just want to have a very positive season.
Q. I would be interested to know when Tiger is not in the field like the year before when he had his injury, there was other players that emerged like Steve, yourself. Is that in the back of your mind when you go out there?
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah, there's no question. If you win when all the great players are in the field, it sure feels a lot better than winning another event. Nothing to take away from the other events. Just knowing that the best players were there definitely gives you a little bit more confidence.
So, yeah, you want the best there. You know, everybody seems to bring their best game when all the best are there. To win an event like that is always pretty special.
Q. Tim Clark aced No. 12 but he didn't get a car. You guys both came close.
JERRY KELLY: I will tell you, my wife already has this car on order at home. Literally. I swear to God, we've already got the order in. It was about a month ago we put it in.
But it hasn't arrived and we haven't paid for it yet. Boy, that would have saved me a lot of money right there. Would have been nice. Think they'd give me one anyway?
Q. What did you hit?
JERRY KELLY: I hit a -- were those 5s?
STEVE STRICKER: 6s.
JERRY KELLY: 6s, yeah.
Q. Would you say right next to the hole?
STEVE STRICKER: Right next to the hole.
JERRY KELLY: Mine was about an inch short of it. Right on line.
Q. Jerry, how would you compare the two victories?
JERRY KELLY: I would say I was friends with Rod coming in there, too, so that was pretty special. We were very similar in games. Steve and I, I think Rod and I were probably a little more similar. We have the same distances. We have similar distances off the irons, but he's bombing it off the tee now. That's great for us.
The difference is having really my best friend out there to play golf with and to win with. That's just really cool. You just don't get to do that in many lifetimes. We've done it twice and got a win out of it. Nothing better than that.
Q. You guys keep referring to each other as close friends and good friends. You just used "best friends." Does this ramp it up now?
JERRY KELLY: BFF forever now. No, I mean, it's just you don't have many. You know, my wife is my best friend. I would say that.
STEVE STRICKER: You just said I was your friend.
JERRY KELLY: Sorry. You're my second BFF. My wife is my best friend, and Steve's wife is his best friend. Going outside of that, we're such family men that we don't want to slight the two of them for what they really are.
But when it comes to on Tour, there's no question about it for me. So, I mean, we've always traveled with our families. If I'm not doing something with him, usually I'm in my room. That's about it. So it is what it is.
Q. Kenny said something about the Wisconsin scorekeeper. What was that about?
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah, Paula. She scored for us the first day and then this last day here. She's from Wisconsin. The backside of our score pad was a Badger flag. Yeah, I think she might have been rooting extra hard for us, and maybe putting little spells on Kenny and J.B.
But, yeah, nice lady. She's Wisconsin through and through. She's fun.
Q. Are you guys gonna hang out for a little bit, or heading right back to the great white north?
STEVE STRICKER: Going back.
JERRY KELLY: Right back.
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah.
End of FastScripts