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U.S. SENIOR OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP


July 12, 2013


Rocco Mediate


OMAHA, NEBRASKA

THE MODERATOR:  Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to welcome Rocco Mediate here into the Media Center.  68, 67, 135, 5 under par.
Rocco, you came in here before the championship and said, if it you putt well, you'll contend.  Right now, you're second in putting, 25 putts today.
ROCCO MEDIATE:  I am putting well, yes.  You can have 25 putts when you hit like one green.  That's what I did today.  That can't happen on the weekend or it's over.  I have no chance.
It's no big deal.  I know what caused it, just a little too much excitement.  There's so many people.  I'm so into it.  I've got to control that adrenaline and emotion.  I didn't do a good job of it today, except on the greens and around the greens.
THE MODERATOR:¬† The only bogey‑free round of the day today so far.
ROCCO MEDIATE:¬† I'm actually quite happy with that.¬† A bogey‑free round at any USGA event is kind of amazing of the I'm amazed I got through that way because I had plenty of opportunities to make bogeys, plenty of opportunities.
Sometimes that keeps momentum.¬† I putted good.¬† I almost made a few more birdies, but I made a couple of good‑‑ but my pitching and stuff was silly today.¬† It was really good out of that high rough.
Kind of grew up that way around the greens.  Love it.  I really don't want to have to do that again tomorrow, but we'll see if that has to happen.
THE MODERATOR:  You birdied 2, 3, and 4.  Take us through some of the maybe better up and downs you had out there.  There were a lot of them.
ROCCO MEDIATE:¬† 1 was pretty easy.¬† That was just on the fringe.¬† That doesn't count.¬† 2, 3, 4.¬† 5, I just missed a short birdie.¬† 6, I had about a 15‑yard pitch to the green, and I was laying two.¬† The next shot I had a six‑yard pitch to the green.¬† Didn't work out real well.
But the next one was good.¬† And I pitched it close on 7.¬† 8 was a nasty up and down.¬† Just over the green.¬† Pretty good second but just too far.¬† Had to give it a little flop.¬† Hit it down there, two‑footer or or a couple feet.
9, no.¬† 10, nothing.¬† 11‑‑ oh, 11 was just a little right of the green.¬† I just kind of pushed the wedge.¬† It was terrible, and pitched it up there stiff.¬† I mean, it was‑‑ I actually was surprised.
12, same thing.  I hit a horrible tee shot left.  Decent second.  Pitched it to about eight, ten feet, in.  Silly.  Then 13 I just missed.
14‑‑ well, I two‑putted 14.¬† 15, I two‑putted.¬† 16 in the bunker, pretty simple shot.
17 was sick.  I hit a horrible tee shot.  Horrible tee shot.  Jumper out of the right rough with a 9 iron flew four or five yards over the green, ended up just straight up and three feet in.  It was actually a hard putt, but I made that.
And then 18, I hit two decent shots.¬† Sometimes when you don't have it, you can't seem to find it.¬† I couldn't really find it.¬† I had my moments, but one of those days.¬† You just got to get in‑‑ I mean, I got my job done today.¬† Maybe tomorrow I go out, next two days I play really good, and who knows?¬† You never know.
But today, I saved my ass today.  Obviously, the way Michael's playing, it might not even matter anyway.  So it's pretty amazing stuff.  Pretty amazing stuff.  Did he birdie any more holes?

Q.  No.
THE MODERATOR:  Just finished.
ROCCO MEDIATE:  He must have a fever or something.  Michael Allen is a wonderful guy.  Happy for him.  I've been telling him the last few weeks, if I just stay anywhere around you, I'll be good.
I'm decent.  He's good.  He's a really good dude.
THE MODERATOR:  Open it up to questions.

Q.  Rocco, I've got to ask you a divot question.  With so many short par 4s out there, are the divots becoming a problem?
ROCCO MEDIATE:  I was in one yesterday on 17 because the ball goes up, and it kind of kicks back down into that little swale.  There's a little swale there, and I did fine with it.  That's the only one I had.
But you're close to a lot of them.¬† We don't see it, obviously, from 200‑whatever yards away we are, but that's the way it is.¬† I mean, it's just certain shots that‑‑ if it was a 3 iron shot yesterday instead of a wedge, problem, but it wasn't.
So most of the time, that's what the holes they're on, little short holes that everybody hits in the same area.  So it's going to happen.  It's going to happen.  Hopefully, it won't change the face of the event, though.  We'll see.

Q.  Rocco, scores seemed to be lower this afternoon.  Any explanation?  Kind of goes against convention.
ROCCO MEDIATE:  No.  It was blowing about whatever, and it was hot, and it's hard, and the rough's nasty.  But the golf course is holding up well.  The greens were good today.
I caught a little spike mark on 13.  I hit a really good putt for birdie, and I thought I made it, but it just kicked it to the right.  But that's going to happen.  Everything's holding up pretty well.  It's good.
I don't know.  Guys are really good, I guess.  I'll give us some kudos there.

Q.  Rocco, early in the round, you had two putts that missed by maybe that much.
ROCCO MEDIATE:  I know.  I had some close ones.

Q.  If those had gone in, could you have had a Michael Allen type day?
ROCCO MEDIATE:¬† Maybe.¬† Those are the ones‑‑ it didn't really kill my momentum.¬† Lovely pitch from 15 yards short on 5, but that can happen.¬† I'm not making excuses, but it can happen on this type‑‑ this grass is so tight, and it's growing against you.¬† So if you're not clean, you're done.
I had the same shot on 7, and I saw the camera guy was back.¬† You son of a‑‑ you're looking at me to do it again, aren't you?¬† I know Johnny is up there going, whoa, last time, folks, here we go.¬†¬† So I made sure.¬† If you mess it up, it's easy to look stupid out there on some of those pitches because they're so tight.¬† But I love that stuff, though.
I made a little boo‑boo, I got a little anxious, and it went six feet in front of me.¬† But, yeah, I had a couple of close ones.¬† I mean, 9, I just missed on 9.¬† 13.¬† You never know.¬† I might have‑‑ I don't know.
But it's okay if you do your best and get your butt kicked like Michael beat us all up today.  Like I said, it's the halfway point.  This is a nasty event, in a good way.  You never know what's going to happen.  Michael knows what he's doing, and he's already won a major.  His first win was a major.  He knows what he's doing.
We got to go out and get him.  He ain't going to come back, more than likely.

Q.  You get to play with him tomorrow.  Is that an advantage?
ROCCO MEDIATE:¬† I really wanted to.¬† Coming in, I knew I was losing it the last four or five holes.¬† I just didn't quite‑‑ I was trying to be relaxed.¬† I knew I was putting good.¬† Just get it somewhere where you can find this thing and get this thing in somehow, make a birdie, whatever.
I want to play in the last group because you just want to.  It's cool to play in the last group of a major championship.  It doesn't happen all the time.
So, yeah, I think‑‑ I know Slu is right there too.¬† Are we playing twos or threes tomorrow?

Q.  Twos, I think.
ROCCO MEDIATE:  If Slu is in, that would be cool also.  It would be cool to be in the last group for sure.  Plus, Michael and I are good buddies.  We'll laugh our butts off pretty much most of the day, yeah.
THE MODERATOR:  Any other questions for Rocco?  All right.  1:35.  Tied for second right now.  Congratulations.
ROCCO MEDIATE:  Hopefully see you tomorrow.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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