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June 12, 2008

Kevin Streelman


Full Audio Interview

Q. Something about this place brings out the best in you?

KEVIN STREELMAN: I do enjoy this golf course. It just suits -- I don't know, the lines off the tee kind of suit my eye well. Fortunately, drove it well and my iron play was pretty solid today. So try and keep it going.

Q. You had such a great run here at the Buick. Could you kind of review what happened. Didn't you get thrown in as an alternate?

KEVIN STREELMAN: I was the last alternate to get in Thursday morning, six minutes before my tee time, and kind of raced out and went out and shot a 5-under on the other course, and shot 9-under here, and all of a sudden, I was paired with Tiger.

So that was definitely an eye-opening experience, but to this day, one of the cooler experiences of my life.

Q. That helped you though, obviously it carried over here and you've been having a good year?

KEVIN STREELMAN: It did. I felt like to kind of do that out of the gates, took away a lot of the anxiety, I would say, of -- I almost feel a lot less nervous on my tee boxes after doing that with him. Great experience for me, I agree.

Q. On Saturday when you played with Tiger, and, obviously, I think you shot 75 that day, and then 77 on Sunday, what did you take out of that when you assessed it?

KEVIN STREELMAN: The main thing I took out of it was the necessity of rest, especially after a day like that. I'm definitely going to take that into regards tonight and tomorrow. It's wearing on you, especially playing with Tiger and under the media, the scrutiny, and the excitement, and so many people around, it's -- it drains energy from you. So you really have to kind of manage that and maintain it, and keep your downtime pretty chill, because it will take a lot out of you.

Q. On the end there, what happened on 8 and 9? You saved par on 8?

KEVIN STREELMAN: Yeah, 8, it's playing straight down wind and had been a 7-iron during all the practice rounds, so I tried to hit a really high 7-iron. We weren't sure where it landed, but assume it landed on the top shelf and rolled off. I made a really nice 2-putt there to save par.

9, I was fortunate to get a nice kick to stay in the first -- the second cut of rough, which you can kind of play a shot out of. And then I thought I hit a perfect hybrid down the fairway, and it normally should kick right down there, and it shot through and jumped into that other cut of rough, and I just caught a flier to be honest. I hit a good shot and it just jumped on me a little and I was pretty much in a lot of trouble over the back of that green.

Q. What were you thinking to stay consistent for that string of pars you had after knowing you had the round pretty much where you wanted it at 4-under?

KEVIN STREELMAN: I felt so many of my best shots of the day were at five, six, where I burned the edge on all those putts. Then a great save at seven. But those three, all those three putts could have dropped just as easily as burn the edge. So that would have been really exciting. But it's so early, I'm just trying to enjoy this and -- I think for me, the key's going to be keeping it in the fairway out here. You do that, you can hit golf shots. If you don't, you're in trouble.

Q. You referenced the Buick but of course this is the U.S. Open. This is a USGA set up, you go out there and do what you did in this first round playing in your first one, how meaningful is this to you?

KEVIN STREELMAN: It probably hasn't quite sunk in yet, but it's pretty cool. I've had two big things happen in my life the last couple of weeks: one of them was getting married, and that was a great weight off the shoulders and an excitement, as well, and just I felt great the last -- also it was two weeks off of golf, which was great for me as well. I really came back refreshed. The other thing was last week at Memphis, was visiting the Children's Hospital there at St. Jude, and my buddy there actually gave me this bracelet I've been wearing, Daniel who went through his last round of chemo this week, and I wear this pin up here, it's also from the hospital, and that really puts things in perspective when we're play! ing for this much money and very blessed to be out here.

But it's almost -- it's pretty insignificant compared to when you have little guys chasing their lives, trying to fight off cancer and stuff like that. So that really put things in perspective for me.

Q. Did that give you some mental fortitude? Did you think about him when you were out there?

KEVIN STREELMAN: I think about him every day. Every since I meant him I think about him.

Q. What's his name?

KEVIN STREELMAN: Daniel is his name.

End of FastScripts

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