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February 9, 2014

Jordan Spieth


Q.  From 78 on Saturday to 67, bogey‑free, on Sunday.  Talk about it.
JORDAN SPIETH:  It is a different golf course.  It is playing difficult.  Couple of the pins are the same, which is nice.  You get similar reads that you had the first round.  But, all in all, I just, I went out and had a little more fun.  One of those, smiling from the first hole, and decided not to grind too much and just kind of let it happen.  Which is what I should do on every Saturday.  But, it's kind of a tale of last year, I get in contention Saturday, fall down a little Saturday and then comeback.  So, the game still feels really good from the beginning of this year until now.  So excited for the next two weeks.

Q.  You jump started your round pretty early with that eagle on 2.
JORDAN SPIETH:  Yeah, it was great.  I had a good number in the fairway.  I was able to rip a hybrid.  Got a nice bounce.  And then made a good little snake of a 20‑footer and it's always nice to get that going off the bat.
And then you got out to the wind holes and just had some great up‑and‑downs there on 6, and I want to say it was 6, 8, 10, to stay in there.  Mix in a birdie on 9.  And then just kind of grinded the back nine.

Q.  8‑under par probably not going to be enough to catch Jimmy.  But, still a satisfying tournament for you I would imagine, the way you ended things and ground things out here on Sunday?
JORDAN SPIETH:  I can't, definitely.  It's a good week.  Got myself into contention again and hopefully, get that going the next couple weeks here and then maybe get in the last few groups and grind it out from there.

Q.  Talk about the difference between yesterday and today.
JORDAN SPIETH:  Yesterday was a day where you want to play Pebble Beach in that weather once in your life.  You just don't want it to be Saturday when you're in the lead.  But, it was fun.  It was fun today.  I just had more fun today.  We were‑‑ Jake came up, said let's smile more, and let's go out there and kind of try and feed off each other and make a run at the thing.  And although we're going to fall short in the amateur game, we had a great time.
And yesterday I went out there tied for the lead and just tried to force it too much.  I was trying to shoot under par on a day where you really needed to play it safe and just try and hit the ball to the fat part of the greens.  And I didn't want to do that.  I'm swinging well.
I even had seven 3‑putts yesterday into this morning, which is I think a new record, but it was honestly‑‑ I feel like I'm putting the ball well.  I'm hitting it on my line, I'm just off on the speed and then missed a couple shorter ones, just misaligning.
But my stroke feels great.  I haven't actually been working on anything in my putting streak this whole week, which is rare.  Just get out there and hit a bunch of putts and feel it.  And I just didn't get enough speed working prior to yesterday's round.  I think that's all it was.  So, I was a little off, but turned it around, got a lot of work in between rounds this morning and on the putting green, and kind of got off on a good start on 2.

Q.  Would today be a learning lesson?
JORDAN SPIETH:  Yeah, I think so, you can always take something out of it.  Very rarely do you play a golf course in those conditions, I mean, where it's that whipping wind and rain, but again growing up in Texas we see wind and everybody had to play with it.
It's not like Monterey or Spyglass would have been any fun either, so definitely not blaming it on‑‑ definitely not blaming that we are on this course, it's just that I just didn't play smart enough.

Q.  Outside of 9, was there anything that you took on that you shouldn't have in the third round?
JORDAN SPIETH:  Yesterday?  Yeah, I mean it was just‑‑ I was trying to force the ball with the wind on the tee shots instead of holding it up against the wind and taking the ball 20 yards back in the fairway.  So trying to gain 20 yards ‑‑ I mean just little things that I ‑‑ when I did that, I missed the fairway and then from there, I was on the wrong side trying to attack the pins.  I mean 9, I didn't even try and be aggressive, it was just a bad tee shot and I didn't have much of a choice.
So, yeah, I could go through the round and I just ‑‑ I was putting from above the hole a lot, even on 6, 7, 8‑footers.  And from there I wasn't thinking about the speed.  I was thinking about trying to knock them in, because I felt like I needed birdies, which I didn't.

Q.  After you play a practice round out here and then have a round out here like yesterday‑‑ when you come to that stretch of 6, 7, 8, you hit it probably at its worst?
JORDAN SPIETH:  Yeah, I hit 7‑iron into number 7 today and I hit 8‑iron yesterday and it was blowing harder and I hit lob wedge in the practice round.  I mean, was it Jack that said he has hit anything from a lob wedge to a 1‑iron on that hole of the something like that?
And it's just, it makes a difference, but the more you let it, the more you think about it, the worse it is.  And today I just said everybody behind us is going to have it, we're getting it out of the way and if I can play through these really those four holes under par, five holes under par, then I'm gaining a couple on the field.  And that's what happened.  I felt great about it after that par save on 10, I said, all right, now we're turning a little with the wind and maybe we can get some good looks here.

Q.  That was a big putt on 18.
JORDAN SPIETH:  It's a putt that ‑‑ well, it was for birdie, but it was a putt that ‑‑ I saw the board, I knew where I stood‑‑ it was a big putt for me because really at the beginning of this round I wanted to get back to 9‑under, I mean, yeah, I wanted to get back to 9‑under, where I started.  I wanted to get all of them back.  And although that wasn't a possibility, when I had that putt, it's just one of those where, you're on 18, in a final round, and it's going to mean a lot for momentum.  And I've hit some good putts today and I even missed a couple on the back nine from shorter length and I just trusted my read and put a great stroke and it went right in the middle.  I was just really, really happy with the way I struck the putt.
Looking back I probably wouldn't, because it's not like it won the tournament, but it was a big putt for me for my confidence to drop one on 18 when I needed it, under pressure.

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