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May 2, 1997

Dottie Pepper


KERRY FALLENZ: Start with your card?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Sure. Let us see. Missed it from twelve feet at 1; to start out the day. But hit two solid shots in there. Made birdie at 2 after knocked 5-wood in there about three feet. Hit 5-footer for par at the third after hitting it in the right bunker. Then made birdie at 5 and 6 both from about ten feet. 9-iron into the fifth and 6-iron into the 6th. Made a 10-footer for par at 7 after driving it in the fairway bunker there, not making the green. Missed a really good opportunity at 8. I missed about a 12-footer, 15-footer there. Then made a routine par at 9. Then birdied 10 from about four feet. Left it short at 11 from about 15 feet.

Q. What did you hit into 10?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Hit 8-iron into 10. Made a great up-and-down at 12. That was the highlight of the day. Drove it in the left fairway bunker, hit it in the right bunker short of the green and had about a 40-yard bunker shot up-and-down for par. Made birdies at 13 and 14 -- excuse me, didn't make birdie at 13. Parred 13. Left it short. Hanged it on the lip there. And made birdie at 14, the par 3; hit 4-iron in there to about six feet. 2-putted at 15. Drove it in the water. Made double at 16. Made a good up-and-down from just short of the green at 17 for par. And then missed a pretty good chance at 18.

Q. Pretty good shot on 18.

DOTTIE PEPPER: Yeah. Awkward lie up and down side of that bunker off the fairway. 190 to the front. It is hard not to try, you know. Certainly should have made the putt.

Q. Working on anything in particular in your putting because it looks good?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I have gotten a little bit more over the ball; narrowed my stance a little bit. But just trying to narrow in on my target. And basically about the same thing I am trying to do with my regular swing is narrow in on my targets, hopefully become a little bit more precise. But I have not driven the ball again for the second day. Drove it rather poorly again, actually. That was where all my mistakes happened or why I got in trouble or had to make putts for par was because I had driven the ball poorly to begin with. Struck my irons real well again. Making birdies at par 3s, I think, dictates that. And, you know, just didn't take advantage of a few situations but also created a couple of others. So, I left a few more out there again today. But all and all, to put up 69 on the board again, sub-70 round and I am still in the tournament.

Q. Talk about driving and the way you have, does it surprise you at all to be 7-under.

DOTTIE PEPPER: No, because it -- as Ralph said, you can land C-130s in these fairways. I mean, by and large, I haven't missed fairways by a whole lot. But, got to be able to hit the fairways out here. They are pretty wide.

Q. Missing it left? Right? Both?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Missed them a little both today. Little more solid than the misses were yesterday. They weren't floating right. So I am just going to spend some more time on the range. It will come. I am not wired about it. If it is not this week, it will be some other time, but this week will certainly be nice.

Q. Do you think you can win if you keep driving like you are driving?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Who knows? Brad Faxon manages to do it week-in, week-out. He can hit it all over the place and still manage to come up with a win or two. So it doesn't have to be textbook to win it. After so years out here I have certainly found that out.

Q. You said yesterday that you were going to spend a lot of time next week working on your game. Are some things coming a little quicker than you thought.

DOTTIE PEPPER: Yeah, a little bit. I actually hit -- like I said, hit some great iron shots yesterday -- this morning, we spent a lot of time on the range; again yesterday afternoon, working on a couple of drills to get my lower body moving better. And it carried over pretty well. Now I just got to carry it all the way through up to the driver. Doesn't seem to quite catch on all the way through but certainly pleased with the way I hit my irons today.

Q. How big was the save at 12 as far as keeping you going.

DOTTIE PEPPER: Actually just having the ball in the bunker was pretty good. I thought I hit it far enough, that I hit it in the hazard, second shot -- but that was pretty big.

Q. 16, the toughest driving hole, you think.

DOTTIE PEPPER: 16 and 2, I think probably the two toughest driving holes out here. Partly because, at my length, I am in the squeeze play in between the hazard and the bunker and I belong hitting 3-wood off that tee, really even if it means having 4-iron to a back pin. It is a wide target. That is where I made the first mistake.

Q. You hit a 3-wood?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Trying to hit driver. I hit driver today and I had no business hitting a driver. Especially with it being, you know, really wasn't into the wind today. So I made a mistake there and tried to squeeze it down there and really shouldn't have bothered.

Q. The way it was this morning, you had an early tee time, the greens were probably in immaculate shape; in order to keep your patience when things don't go well, do you get a sense that you need be posting birdie after birdie?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Things went pretty well, I thought. I had one bad hole. I am not unhappy with the way I played. I am unhappy with the way I finished, but certainly not unhappy with the way I played. No, I think if you go out there and just start forcing the issue, you are in for a long day.

Q. You tend to be a really good front runner, once you get going, I mean, sort of like a steam roller. What do you attribute that to?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Believe it or not, I have won more tournaments coming from behind than I have ahead. But, I don't know. I think it is kind of maybe what Carner said to all of us at the Greenbrier during Solheim Cup, when you get them 1 down, get them 2 down. And, I learned a lot that week. That was probably one of the weeks I will take maybe the most input and turn it into something that will last all career long.

KERRY FALLENZ: Any other questions for Dottie? Thanks.

End of FastScripts....

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