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January 6, 2014

Billy Horschel


Q.  That was really good.
BILLY HORSCHEL:  Yeah, it was a solid round.  It wasn't anything that I was shocked by.  I played well the first couple of days, and especially the second round and wasted a couple shots.  I wasted shots the first three rounds, and I did it again today.  I didn't birdie 18 right in front of the green, so all in all it was a good day.  It could have been better, but the first week of the year I played well with very little practice.  So, I'm happy.  Unfortunately, I don't think it's going to get me the W.

Q.  Are you more happy about the way you played or disappointed in the ones that you missed?
BILLY HORSCHEL:  I mean, I'm happy the way I played.  I'm going to finish Top 10.  I think I'm solid to finish top 10.  But when you look back at it, the second round I was three or four, I think I was four under par, go to 15 and make double there.  I had a penalty.  I had to call a penalty shot on myself.  Stepped in and the ball moved, and I didn't think it was a penalty because I didn't think I was close enough to the ball.  But that's just, I didn't know the rule.  I thought a club length‑‑ if you're outside a club length or two and the ball moved, it wasn't your fault.  But I guess I was wrong.  And then I three‑putt the next hole.  So I shoot 1‑under the second round when it could have easily been five, six, seven.
Yesterday I played well and wasted a couple shots coming in.  I mean, every day, I'm sure everyone could say the same thing.  But it's a good week.  I'm happy and I'm not disappointed at all.

Q.  You birdied 15 yesterday and today, so talk about taking a recovery on that hole?
BILLY HORSCHEL:  Yeah, I hit a bad shot on the second day, sort of topped my 3‑wood.  It happens the first couple weeks of the year.  You may hit a bad shot here or there.  Yeah, I mean, so that whole‑‑ today I hit a better tee shot.  The last couple days I've been hitting a power cut, sort of double crossing it, and hitting it up into the hole.  Not leaving myself farther back.  So today I hit a good tee shot, a great 5‑wood where the ball was and online with the pin.  I hit a great putt in.  Broke more than what me and my caddie thought.  15 was one of those holes where if you get two good shots, it should be an easy birdie, but if you bail out right, it's not easy.

Q.  How do you like starting the year here being at this golf course?
BILLY HORSCHEL:  Oh, it's great.  I've watched this on TV for many, many years.  It's nice having my family here, and my parents, my younger brother, my wife and her mom.  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to bring my older brother and his wife and two girls.  He's sort of in the middle of his basketball season as a director of sports medicine at College of Charleston.  But it's a great place.  I'm sure I'll be back for many years to come, and I look forward to starting my year here every year.

Q.  With you and Jordan out there, what is the hardest thing for a first timer to figure out on this golf course?
BILLY HORSCHEL:  Just the putts.  You know everything goes towards the ocean.  You know when you're putting up to the mountain where some of the pins were the last couple days, right on the edge of the green.  The green would be built up one way or another where it should be downhill, but those last maybe five, six feet are actually going back up and slowing the putt down or vice versa.
Also, I think some of the wind.  You could feel some of the winds out there on the fairway a certain way, and you think it could be helping, and by the green it hurts a little bit.  So just that knowledge that I'll have for future years is a big benefit.  That's why you see guys that play well here year‑in and year‑out, you have that knowledge of some of the younger guys, and the rookies here, the newbies don't have.  We have to learn on the fly.

Q.  (No microphone)?
BILLY HORSCHEL:  Yeah, he's doing a good job.  That kid is unbelievable.  You know, everyone talks about him.  It's like, man, they're talking about this guy and he's good, no doubt about it.  But he's seven years younger than me.  He's 20 years old.  I mean, Geez, when I was 20 I was on the U.S. golf team doing well, drinking beer and partying and having fun, and he's out here mixing it up with all these guys.  I think it's a great life at 27.  I mean, he's got a great life at 20.  It's unbelievable.
He's a good kid.  There is not a better kid than him.  Everything he's done in the last year, he could easily get a big head and feel that he deserves more and is entitled to more, and he never comes off that way to me, and I don't think he comes off that way to anybody.  I just think he's a special kid.  He's one of those that doesn't come along very often.  Hopefully, I can keep playing and compete with him and these other guys out here for many years to come.

Q.  What's improved most about your game since you were that age?
BILLY HORSCHEL:  I'm not sure if anything has to do with the swing or anything.  I think it's more attitude.  It's more patience than anything.  Not getting upset, not getting ahead of myself.  I mean, shoot, I doubled the first hole first round.  I three‑putted from four feet, so I could have easily been in a bad mood.
But I'm getting older.  I think every year I get older, I think the more I grow and mature on the course.  I feel like a pretty mature kid off the golf course.  Other than that, my wedge game just switched up the bag a little bit.  Added a fourth wedge, took out the 4‑iron, and that's been a big help.  It's only my second time doing it this week.  I did it at the Shark Shootout and did it here, and I just see the added benefit of having a fourth wedge in the bag.  I'm pretty excited about that.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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