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June 5, 1999

Lorie Kane


RHONDA GLENN: Ladies and gentlemen, Lorie Kane bogeyed two of the first three holes, and unfortunately had a bogey on the 17th hole; but she also had four birdies, and she is currently at 11-under par. Must have been somewhat upsetting to have a shaky start like that when you're tied for the lead.

LORIE KANE: Well, yeah. You know, the 1st hole, I hit a great drive and good approach shot. Juli runs in a 20-footer -- 20-footer, I guess, maybe a little shorter than that. I was like: No big deal. That's the way it goes. But the next two holes, I 3-putt, and you can't do that in any golf tournament, let alone the U.S. Open when you're trying to, you know, get something going. The next hole, I hit it in probably 3 1/2 feet, 4 feet, and missed it as well. So I'm feeling at that point a little bit sorry for myself. And then something turned it around and, you know, I gave myself a little kick in the butt. I said: There's lot of golf left. It is the third round. And played pretty steady from that point. Probably the biggest thing happened was on the front nine, I left myself about a 30-footer for par, and I made it. Then I followed up with a birdie on 8. So I think what was probably, as we say in Canada, the TSN "turning point." That's our sports channel. I think they are ESPN's equivalent.

RHONDA GLENN: Did the fact that it was the Women's Open get to you a little bit in the early holes, you're tied for the lead?

LORIE KANE: I would probably say no, but then I am probably telling the truth. I was very excited to be in the final group, knowing that we are going to be on TV and knowing that folks at home are going to be watching. I told you yesterday how important my family is to me, and I was out there trying to not only play for myself, like I do every week, but to show the folks at home, you know, that I can handle it out here. And, you know, it took me a few holes to get settled down. But come the end, a lip-out on 17, I thought I played pretty solid from the 7th hole on.

Q. You had problems with your hand about a month ago. How is your injury doing?

LORIE KANE: I'm still looking like webbed fingers here, but I'm sure that the heat is good. It has not been bothering me. It was a little achy the other day, but it's not a problem.

RHONDA GLENN: This was surgery that you had on your thumb?

LORIE KANE: No, I haven't had surgery, thank heavens. It's called skier's thumb, or gamekeeper's thumb is on older term. It's tendons in the top part of my thumb are pretty much pulled or overextended. My thumb will go back too far at impact, and in the follow-through with the driver, especially, it sends sharp pains in through the knuckle and right down to my wrist almost. And at Dinah Shore, it really was bad, and I just played. I didn't practice or anything. I took three weeks off and thought that that would cure it, but it was actually worse. The physiotherapist that we have on TOUR concocted this for me to wear, and I guess it's USGA approved. (Laughter.) But it really helped. The only thing, downside, I can't wear a glove. And in this heat, a glove would really help.

Q. The way that Juli is playing, how difficult is it going to be to catch her? Because this is the U.S. Open, do you think that will help those in pursuit?

LORIE KANE: Well, I can tell you that Juli Inkster is playing very solid golf, she is putting the ball extremely well -- I guess all the things you need to do to win a U.S. Open. I said earlier that if I wasn't in this tournament playing and if I wasn't in the position that I am, I'd be betting on Juli Inkster. I'm comfortable though, where I am. And I'm going to be chasing tomorrow. And we'll see what happens. But if I were a betting person, I'd be betting on Juli Inkster.

Q. Why? Just because of the way she's carried herself today?

LORIE KANE: Juli, first of all, I think she deserves to have the U.S. Open. She's hitting the ball superb and really putting very well, and she's very comfortable. Just watching her throughout today, you know, even when I was struggling in the beginning, that could be tough when you're having somebody in your group that's not playing the greatest, it can bring you down. But I, thank heavens, wasn't bothering her. If anything, she was more encouraging to me; and you know, she's just hitting really solid. I look for probably a lower score tomorrow from her.

Q. First of all, you have to feel confident off the course the way you brought it back. Forget about 17, but you did bring it back. What's the mode tomorrow? Is it going to be: I've got to put pressure on her early? I've got to go out and get it?

LORIE KANE: I'm not going to be doing anything but trying to put my golf ball in the fairway first, and on the green, and try to get it in the hole. You know, like I said, I like the position I'm in. I'm going to go out and charge and try to make as many birdies as possible. But I don't think of it as putting pressure on Juli. I think of it as putting pressure on the board. Doesn't matter whose name is there. I just want to have low numbers.

Q. You said a few moments ago you think that Juli deserves to have the U.S. Open. Why?

LORIE KANE: Well, my caddy, Danny Sharp, and I were walking down the 9th hole today, and I said to Danny: What impresses me the most about Juli is, No. 1, she's a great golfer; but, No. 2, and probably more importantly in my eyes, is she's a great person. And somebody like Juli deserves a U.S. Open. She's a very proud American. She's very proud of the LPGA TOUR and what she does out here, and she's a very proud mom, and she just deserves it.

Q. Would you talk a little bit about that scramble on the 18th hole for par? That seemed like a pretty good time up-and-down. What were your thoughts standing over the putt that kept you at second place, tied for the lead?

LORIE KANE: Well, I would not call it a scramble as much. I thought I had a pretty good 6-iron that's just -- if you don't realize from the fairway how high up that green sits. But it was a very important up-and-down. And more importantly, I had just lipped out about that length on 17. So I was thinking at the heart of the cup and not really thinking in my mind anything about second or, you know, where I was at the time. I just knew I needed to make four, and that was the most important thought.

Q. Is there a certain number you're going to try and shoot tomorrow?

LORIE KANE: I've shot 46 once, so I'm sure I can -- it could be possible to do it again. I don't know about Sunday U.S. Open, though. I'm just going to go out and try to, you know, stay very patient at the beginning of the round and birdie the holes I know you have good chances at. This golf course, things are getting a little firmer out there. So Sunday could be an interesting day.

RHONDA GLENN: How much firmer? For instance, if you're hitting a normal, say, 7-iron to the green, normal height, how far would it bounce after it hits, as opposed to earlier in the week?

LORIE KANE: That's when you talk about release in the clubs, and that's something really I don't pay a lot of attention to. But the ball is -- it does seem to be releasing at least a club and a half.

RHONDA GLENN: So you would hit an 8-iron instead of a full 7-iron?

LORIE KANE: Depending there again on which particular hole you're playing, because the greens that sit up seem to be a little bit softer. 16, you know, it probably only released -- I had the middle of the ridge, and it went to the back of the green. You know, it just depends on the hole.

Q. Whoever wins tomorrow is going to win half of what the men will make in a couple weeks. Especially for a player who came to the TOUR late, your thoughts on the pay difference?

LORIE KANE: That's not something that I worry about. I don't play golf for the money. I play golf because I love it. And we're very fortunate that we have this tournament and the rest of the tournaments that we have on our TOUR. And the money thing isn't an issue with me.

End of FastScripts....

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