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June 8, 2005

Paula Creamer


Q. We've got Paula Creamer here in the interview room. Paula, you've won your first tournament at Sybase, and then you took a week off to graduate high school. Talk about coming back out now having your first win under your belt.

PAULA CREAMER: Last week was pretty hectic because the week before that was graduation. I was trying to get back, settled down, and I was put back into my place, you know. Coming into this week I'm feeling very confident, my coach is here. We worked on some things. I hit the best I have all year pretty much today in the practice round.

Q. Any questions?

Paula, was there ever a time right after you turned pro that you were having any doubts.

PAULA CREAMER: No, you know, everything has been just I'm very lucky. I feel comfortable. I have a great team around me. Everything is kind of falling in its place. It's a matter of time for me to feel confident in myself. It came pretty fast. Obviously I wanted it sooner, but we'll take it. A win is a win.

Q. What is the biggest thing you've learned in your time as a professional?

PAULA CREAMER: How to pace myself out in the golf course. That was one thing I had to learn. You're going to be traveling every week, different places. I haven't seen the golf courses everyone else has seen. I have to play more practice rounds and learn to control my practice schedule.

Q. Were you thrown off going into last week after the week off for graduation?

PAULA CREAMER: The week of my graduation, the first ball I hit was actually on Thursday, which was for a clinic, so I really didn't have much time to practice to, you know, settle down. It was kind of chaotic. I had a lot of fun at graduation. I was kind of flustered. I had a lot of things going on.

Q. How much fun did you have at graduation? What did you do that night?

PAULA CREAMER: Actually, after graduation, I went and did a First Tee clinic, so I didn't really have the normal grad night kind of thing. I went and did a clinic and some other things for the kids after graduation.

Q. Did you stay out late with your friends afterwards?

PAULA CREAMER: No, I got home pretty late. It was about 40 minutes away from where I was so I got home around 8:00 or something like that. It was too late, and I was already tired.

Q. 8:00 is late?

PAULA CREAMER: When you're there early, and then I got home, and I wasn't going to go out. I was too tired. Lots of things were happening.

Q. You mentioned getting to know the courses as you go along. How much does it help you, or a slight advantage being in a place like Bulle Rock as opposed to had we been at DuPont this year?

PAULA CREAMER: Actually, I've played DuPont many times in the Betsy Rawls.

Q. The one you knew and you're not going there?

PAULA CREAMER: Exactly. This golf course is tremendous. It's in great shape. It puts a premium on hitting fairways, and definitely the right part of the greens, which brings a lot of the top players to the top. It's one of those golf courses where you have to be on your game.

Q. Paula, you said at the beginning of the season that winning was a goal. Has the goal gone up?

PAULA CREAMER: Solheim Cup is my main goal. It will be wonderful to play under Nancy Lopez and represent my country. To get there I have to win tournaments. Hopefully this will be one of a couple more to get me on the team. I'm trying to take it week by week.

When I'm out on the golf course and things aren't going well, I think of Solheim, it's a trigger.

Q. Were you surprised how quick that first win came or was it really something you expected?

PAULA CREAMER: I expected myself to win. There's a lot of people who have been out for a while and haven't won. With my game, and I felt where I was at I felt I should be able to win. It came. I guess after an early start, but I expected myself to win before that. I have had a couple chances to. I just never pulled it off, but I did that week.

Q. Did you read a lot of people in the press telling you what you should do? Was there a lot of suggestions as to how you should run with your life?

PAULA CREAMER: Oh, yeah. There's a lot of people that try to say they know me better than I know myself. Still now, I get it a lot with "You shouldn't have turned pro" and things like that. It's my decision, and I wouldn't change a thing.

A lot of people think that going to the Golf Academy was crazy. I would never not go there. I think it's one of the best things for me.

Q. How do you ignore all that?

PAULA CREAMER: I don't really pay attention to it. I ignore it. There's nothing I can do about it. I take in the information I want to, I guess.

Q. Paula, last year as an amateur you had a good showing at the Shoprite. Can you talk about the opportunities you had last year as an amateur to play on this Tour and the opportunities of other amateurs as opposed to the opportunities granted to, say, Michelle Wie?

PAULA CREAMER: I wouldn't have been able to make the determination to turn pro without those sponsors. I knew what it was like to be out on Tour and I did well on the stretch. The most important thing is learning how to pace yourself throughout the year. I found out very quickly what it was like. That helped me make my decision right there.

Q. Do you find it comical about all this talk of a rivalry with Michelle. Do you even consider her a rival?

PAULA CREAMER: When I'm at a golf course, she's one of many players out here that are trying to win. You know, like this weekend, it's just you and the golf course. I can't control what she does and she can't control what I do. I don't really consider a rivalry yet since she's not a professional golfer.

Q. Who is your rivalry right now?

PAULA CREAMER: Well, in my mind, Annika, so, I mean, she's the number one player in the world.

Q. You said people still tell you you shouldn't have turned pro. Did they tell you this after you won?


Q. What kind of people, friends?

PAULA CREAMER: No, I mean, when you talk to someone they think, why didn't you go to school? That was a huge thing for me, to not go to school is very hard. I'm going to get my degree on line. I have been talking to some colleges through on line that I'm going to start in the fall.

Q. Which ones?

PAULA CREAMER: University of Miami and University of Phoenix.

Q. You're trying to decide right now?

PAULA CREAMER: Which one that will work better with my schedule.

Q. How long will it take?

PAULA CREAMER: A very long time. We're trying to decide which classes I should start taking in the fall so I can start getting them out of the way.

Q. Do you have a major in mind?

PAULA CREAMER: Probably communications. I would really love to do fashion design but it would be very hard to do, I think, out on the road, but that would be my ultimate goal.

Q. You should consider economics.

Paula is there a lot of talk about Michelle out there among the Tour players.

PAULA CREAMER: No, not really. I mean, everybody out here takes care of themselves and does their own thing. Not really, no.

Q. Do you have any specific career goals that you could state right now beyond just being good and great and whatever? Anything specific?

PAULA CREAMER: Right now or in the future?

Q. For the future.

PAULA CREAMER: Goodness. The only thing I ever really think about right now is Solheim. It's obviously to be the number one player in the world, to have a lot of career wins. There isn't right now one thing I want to get to. I want to take it year by year. It's hard to say because I'm so focused on Solheim Cup right now.

Q. I know you would love to win a major this year. If you didn't, would you like to see Annika win the Grand Slam? Do you think that will be good for the LPGA?

PAULA CREAMER: If I didn't win, well, yeah, I guess. That's good for women's golf, Annika, but it's hard to talk about wanting someone else to win when I want to win. That's very hard to say, well, if I didn't win, who do you want to win. I mean, I've never even thought of that before.

Q. You've played with her how many times?


Q. Yeah.

PAULA CREAMER: Just once at Nabisco, two years ago.

Q. When you were still an amateur?


Q. Would you find her intimidating based on how she plays and what's she done?

PAULA CREAMER: I don't find Annika intimidating. I respect her for what she's done. She's going to make it much easier for junior girls to get involved with golf. She's brought every aspect into it, physical fitness and things like that. She's longer than anybody and more consistent, and she's made golf what it is right now. That's why she's so dominating, making me have to practice twice as hard as she does to get to where she's at.

Q. Paula, did Nancy call you after Sybase?

PAULA CREAMER: Yes, she did.

Q. Can you tell us what she told you?

PAULA CREAMER: She congratulated me. She called and said, you know, that's an awesome win and she's watching and things like that. It was very nice to know that she's watching.

Q. Do you think as a young player on the Tour that you have to have a certain attitude in order to be successful out here with these veterans?

PAULA CREAMER: I think you have to be very confident with yourself. You can't you have to if you're not confident in yourself, then nobody out here is going to be confident for you. That's the thing is that you have to rely on who's your friends and who's not, and just to realize that you are I know I'm a lot younger than a lot of the women out here and a lot of them have taken me under their wing, Wendy and Lorie, they've helped me through this process so far, which is nice to know that the veterans are there for you.

Q. What are your travel arrangements right now? Who travels with you? Who do you stay with?

PAULA CREAMER: My mom and dad go to every event with me. My coach comes. Every once in a while, my sports psychologist. A lot of my family will come and watch.

Q. You talk about Wendy and Lorie taking you under their wing. Do you hang with them at night? What is the social aspect for an 18 year old out there who goes to bed at 8:00?

PAULA CREAMER: I don't go to bed at 8:00. Actually, my best friend left right after graduation. There was no point in staying there. We have to clear this up.

Q. You brought it up.

PAULA CREAMER: Well, when I'm at a golf tournament, this is all business. At the end of the week, it's all about who's on top. I have to get my rest and things like that. It's hot out there. I mean, you can't go out and I went shopping yesterday, so I got that out of the way, and, you know, it's just I think after the round, I have my coach's daughter is here, and I'll go swimming with her later on.

When you see all the players every day for the whole year, you don't necessarily want to see them as night as well. It gets a little too much sometimes. I have a couple friends out here that I feel very close to.

Q. Any more questions? All right. Thanks a lot, Paula.


End of FastScripts.

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