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June 17, 2011

Russell Henley


Q. Seemed like on 7 you really kind of got into it and seemed to feed off of that. Did that sort of set you in motion after that?
RUSSELL HENLEY: A little bit. First couple holes were kind of right-left, hit it everywhere, and just kind of grinding, made pars. Both guys in the group, Heath and Nate, made birdie there, and I had a pretty poor wedge shot and had a really good two-putt, though, and I looked up and it was probably the biggest crowd I had seen. I just wanted to loosen up and enjoy myself because I could play great golf and come down the stretch and not be able to play the weekend. I'm not really focused on making the cut, but I was just trying to enjoy myself out there, and I think those fans were kind of looking for something to go after, and I just tried to give that to them. I think that definitely did loosen me up a little bit.

Q. Was that kind of like 8 at Pebble for you?
RUSSELL HENLEY: 8 was awesome last year at Pebble. I wish I could write all those fans a thank you note. But it was, just kind of getting them going, and my brother told me before I went up and played that two-footer in, try to get them going. I was like, well, why not.

Q. Did you have anything else left in your bag?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I had a couple balls, but good gosh, and a glove -- I think I have to go back to the hotel and get a few more.

Q. Your best results lately have been in professional events. Any reason behind that?
RUSSELL HENLEY: The two I've played in this year have been some big crowds. I like the crowd, for or against. I guess it kind of reminds me of playing team sports, and obviously in high school when you don't really get crowds like that, but I've always liked a crowd. It almost makes me feel like my attitude is better because there's kids out there and I just want them to look up and be like, wow, that's what I want to be like. I think it definitely brings out the best in me.

Q. Can you talk about that run you had? I think you made birdie on 9, and then the save on 10, and then the birdie on 11?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Wow, three good holes. I didn't think I was ever going to be able to go for 9 in two. They moved the tees up today and got there in two and had a good two-putt.
10 was a really good up-and-down, confidence booster, made like a seven-footer for par.
Then I wasn't trying to go at the flag at 11, kind of sliced it a little bit with a 5-iron and ended up good and rolled that in. Right there I felt like I had a little bit of control of my game.

Q. It didn't trickle back for a while. Did you stop looking and hear the crowd?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I heard them get a little bit loud up there, and I looked up and it was coming back down. I said, do you see why they're cheering? He said, no, why. I said, my ball is rolling towards the hole. It was pretty cool.

Q. Great shot at 17, but --
RUSSELL HENLEY: I kind of got out of my routine, had some things distract me, had a couple bugs in my face and my focus there was not really good. But I'm just going to chalk it up to that, just bad routine.

Q. Do you play any different on the weekend out here? You made the cut now, just kind of freewheel it a little bit?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Sure, I don't have anything to lose. I'm not playing for money. I'm playing for fun. That's what's great about playing as an amateur. Hopefully I'll play like that when I'm a pro. I'm just going to try to be aggressive.
I mean, tomorrow is moving day, and hopefully I can go out there and keep making some putts. I'm putting great and keep giving myself some chances and try and go low.

Q. Your thoughts on 11-under?
RUSSELL HENLEY: It's great. Before when I was putting with my brother, I go, look, Rory is at 13. He said, yeah, he's only leading by 10. Rory is obviously an outstanding player and sometimes he can just take control of golf courses. It will be good to see what he does this weekend.

Q. How much have you played with Patrick Cantlay?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I played with him in Palmer Cup last week and I've played with him in one other tournament. He's very impressive, little draw down the middle every time and very, very good putter, and he's a great guy, too. Hopefully I'll get to play on his team soon.

Q. Last guy to win low am two years in a row was Phil Mickelson. Can you talk about the significance of going for that again?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Sure, you've just got to let that happen. Obviously Patrick is playing great and he's going to have a good weekend, and I hope to, also.
But last year it's not anything I was focused on. I was focused on having fun and giving the fans something to cheer about. Just going to try to just let that happen.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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