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November 5, 2011
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA
THE MODERATOR: Michael, third consecutive 2-under 69. 6-under for the tournament. Maybe just take us through your day. Looks like four birdies, two bogeys.
MICHAEL ALLEN: Yeah, I think so. Definitely a cooler, difficult day. Let's see. I started out with a drive and a pitching wedge to about 15 feet, made birdie.
7, I hit a 3-wood and a 55 wedge to about 10 feet and made birdie, maybe 12.
Next hole I kind of pushed a 6-iron a little bit, kind of went right at it. It's a tough pin. It did go by about 20, 25 feet. I made that.
Then I left a few out there. What else did I do?
13, I hit a good drive right in the middle of the fairway. Thought the wind was coming in, a little more into me. Hit 5-iron over the green right. Did not hit a very good chip. Missed about a 20-foot putt.
Then I made birdie on 15. I hit 3-wood down the middle of the fairway. Hit a little pitching wedge to about 15 feet.
Made a great up-and-down on the next hole.
Good up-and-down on the next hole.
I guess 18, I actually hit a 3-wood, expected it to be more downwind. Got stuck on the left side there. Not a very good lie. Hit a pretty decent shot I thought that came up pretty well short of the green. Hit a nice chip, nice little bump-n-run up there. Really hit a good putt. But it broke to the right and I missed that from about three feet.
THE MODERATOR: Questions.
Q. Yesterday, if I remember, 18 is a duplicate. You went left and then right. Couldn't quite get there.
MICHAEL ALLEN: Yeah.
Q. Remembering the hole from 30 and 40 years ago, did it ever bother you then? A pretty good finishing hole.
MICHAEL ALLEN: It's a really good finishing hole. It's really the hardest shot. You got to hit a good drive. My ball flight is pretty low. I don't go over things very well. I go around them better. For me, I got to go to the right. You get a little left. You got nothing where I was. If I had a better lie, I could hit a 10-yard hook around there. I didn't have a very good lie. It gets to be a very tough shot. Especially today, straight downwind for your second shot. The first one's tough. It's a good hole from back there.
Q. They were talking on TV yesterday about your ball flight. Has it always been that way? You changed your swing and made it that way?
MICHAEL ALLEN: It was kind of the history of my golf. I grew up Johnny Miller, Mike Lee (indiscernible). Yeah, I love changing my golf swing over the years. It's been fun.
But I worked with Hank Haney for 10 years, realized it wasn't helping me any, couldn't hit enough balls. I went on a search for every different teacher around.
I came up with a guy, Gary Ewing, and really Mac O' Grady helped me to be where I want to be. Then Mike Mitchell, a guy I've been with for the last six or eight years, he's helped me a great deal. We work a lot on getting the core of the body to work properly and the arms will follow. That's kind of how my ball flight has come down. Different than where it used to be 10 years ago.
Q. How much has it helped?
MICHAEL ALLEN: For me, right now I'm struggling to hit the ball. I'm not quite hitting the ball that great right now. Kind of getting it around.
I always feel like I'm close now. I'm never that far away. I used to sit there and finish a round, I'd have to go to the range and hit balls for an hour or two every day. If I didn't do it, I'd just be lost.
So now I realize for the most part, if I keep my body working properly, my swing's always going to be close. It's not always perfect, but it's going to be close. When you can move well and get things proper, it can be good. Better the last eight or ten years than it's ever been in my life. I've had more success. It's made the game fun for me. I don't sit here and not sleep at night and stress. That makes life better when you're not worried about, Am I going to go shank the first ball if I don't go practice for an hour or so?
Q. We had Jay Don in here. He was talking about when he finally got that win earlier this year, first win in 20 years, he said it kind of changed his whole outlook. When you got your first win out here, what did it do for you in terms of feeling like you belong out here?
MICHAEL ALLEN: You know, getting a win is kind of big in that we all come out here to play to win. In the end, that's why we're here. It's fun coming out on Sunday and having a chance to win. So when you finally win, you kind of remember that you know how to do it.
I mean, Jay Don, like I have been doing, he's been a journeyman out here playing for a long time. He knows he belongs out here. When you finally win, you kind of know you got a little more respect from the guys, and yourself, you realize you can hit the shots coming down the stretch, know you can make the putts. That's what it is, it's self-confidence to me anyhow.
It helped me go out on TOUR and help me compete there, know I can close the door when I get the chance.
Q. Even the short holes coming in are tough. It looks like a little bit of a tentative swing on 16. The tree actually held you from going down in the lake or in the hazard.
MICHAEL ALLEN: Yeah, I didn't really know those trees were in play (laughter).
I don't know, as I said, I'm not quite on my game right now. I just didn't quite get wide enough on my stance. Felt out of sorts when I got over that ball for some reason. We were being timed. We were a little slow. I got a little out of sorts. I don't know what happened there. It was certainly a bad shot. I was lucky to come away with a par there. It's a hole you should make birdie on. I was lucky to make four.
Q. Nobody knows what the weather conditions will be like tomorrow. Do you think, if you shoot 69 again tomorrow, that will be good enough to win?
MICHAEL ALLEN: Well, Jay Don is 8-under? It depends on the weather. If it's a bad day, that would be a really good score. That would be a phenomenal score.
You know, I really don't know. All I know is if I can go out and play real well, I'll have a good chance. I don't know about scores. I'm not good enough to predict that.
Q. You talked about the impact of that win. When you play a final round like you're going to tomorrow with a good chance to win, how different are you now than you were for all the years on the PGA TOUR chasing that elusive win that never came? Are you calmer?
MICHAEL ALLEN: To me, when I go out now, I have fun with it. Tomorrow's going to be a fun day no matter what. I'm looking forward to it. There's going to be times out there I'm going to be nervous, a little unsure. There will be times I'll be calm and confident. It's fun. The emotions, you watch yourself, that's what is kind of fun about the day.
If I can kind of keep nice and calm, play a really nice, clean round tomorrow, eliminate all my mistakes, I think I'll have a good chance because I know I can compete out there, hit the ball around the course well enough.
Q. How different is that feeling on a Sunday versus a Saturday?
MICHAEL ALLEN: Yeah, Sunday you kind of feel the repercussions maybe a little bit more. I guess that's more the change, too, from where I was when I was younger. I feel comfortable. I have fun with it now. I'm not questioning everything. Hopefully I'm not fighting myself as much.
Q. Beyond the golf swing, what have you, you contended strongly last year here. How much does having a good vibe help you at this tournament?
MICHAEL ALLEN: It's nice. It's nice to actually have a bunch of people out there following us, have people rooting for me. Again, I feel like I'm very comfortable in this area. Hopefully that vibe will carry through, I can get some good mojo out there tomorrow.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you, Michael.
MICHAEL ALLEN: Thank you.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports