The Solheim Cup: Friday Recap and Interviews

Karine Icher
Photo Credit: David Cannon/Getty Images

Karine Icher of France and the European Team plays her second shot at the first hole during the morning foursome matches for the 2013 Solheim Cup at The Colorado Golf Club in Parker, Colorado.

The Solheim Cup
Colorado Golf Club
Parker, Colorado
Friday Notes and Interviews
August 16, 2013

Team USA
Captain Meg Mallon
Michelle Wie, Cristie Kerr
Brittany Lang, Brittany Lincicome
Jessica Korda, Morgan Pressel

Team Europe
Captain Liselotte Neumann
Suzann Pettersen, Carlota Ciganda
Azahara Munoz, Karine Icher

Two years ago the European Solheim Cup Team pulled off a dramatic, come-from-behind victory at Killeen Castle in Ireland to win the Cup for the first time since 2003. During Friday’s foursomes and four-ball matches at Colorado Golf Club, the young team played as if a comeback wasn’t going to be needed this year.

After capturing three points in the Friday morning foursomes, Team Europe won two more matches in the afternoon four-ball session to take a 5-3 lead over the U.S. Team heading into Saturday’s second day of play.

“Obviously we were extremely happy with that,” said European Solheim Cup captain Liselotte Neumann. “I think the morning was our couple of key matches, we got off to a really good start.  We got those first two matches in and even the fourth match was just solid play and just came off to that good start. And obviously a tie in the afternoon, but I think the morning matches just really put us in the right position.  I think the whole team we feel extremely happy being 5‑3 at this point.”

But while the Europeans held the momentum following the first day of matches as they try to win on U.S. soil for the first time in the history of the event, it was a late-day controversy that made headlines following a ruling dispute in the first match of the afternoon four-ball session (Match No. 5).

On the par-5 15th hole, Carlota Ciganda hit her second shot into the right-hand lateral water hazard near the green. After undergoing a five-minute ball search, the referee in the match determined Ciganda’s options under Rule 26 – 1c. Prior to making a final determination on Ciganda’s options, a second referee was consulted. Per Rule 26-1c, a player who hits into a lateral water hazard is allowed to take equidistant relief on either side of the hazard. However, instead of dropping within the required two clubs lengths per rule 26-1c, Ciganda was permitted to keep the equidistant point between her and the hole resulting in a drop  approximately 40 yards behind the equidistant point.

The decision was called into question by the U.S. Team. After the matches were finished, the rules staff reached agreement that a mistake had been made in the on-course ruling. Both captains were notified of the issue in a meeting. No change was made to the match’s result because the player was instructed to proceed under direction of the official.

 “Obviously, I'm not happy about it,” U.S. Solheim Cup Captain Meg Mallon. “The thing I'm most unhappy about is that it took ‑‑ and we can time it on the TV, I don't know ‑‑ I think it took about 25 minutes for this to happen.  And from our perspective the momentum, which was coming in our favor at that point in time, obviously had stopped.

“Stacy Lewis, who is very adept at the rules, was quite angry about what was happening and I don't blame her.  They had the momentum going in their favor. People make mistakes in rulings, that's not my issue.  We have four matches out there and we have officials with every group, and it shouldn't take that long for something like that to happen.”

Mallon then added: “So, obviously, I'm not pleased, but it's the Rules of Golf, and we have to accept that as a team. And we have to go out tomorrow and play our best and try and get those points back.”

The Americans trailed 3-1 after the morning session of foursomes with the lone point coming from the pairing of Morgan Pressel and Jessica Korda. Neither Pressel nor Korda was sent out for the afternoon sessions, but Team USA tried to find a way to get momentum back on their side at the start of the four-ball matches.

But the first match of the afternoon belonged to Suzann Pettersen. While her partner, Ciganda, struggled to get anything going, Pettersen very nearly won the match entirely on her own.  However, it was a miraculous par by Ciganda on the par-5 15th as part of the ruling mistake that earned the Europeans a critical halve in what was an all-square match against Lewis and Thompson. Ciganda recovered from hitting her second shot into the water by getting her fourth shot  on the green and then sank the par putt to place pressure on Lewis, who had a birdie chance but missed. After Pettersen gave the team a 1-up lead with a birdie on the 16th, the Norwegian made a short par putt on the 18th to seal the 1-up victory.

“I'm just really enjoying playing with these youngsters,” said Pettersen. “I'm so proud of them.  It's not easy to go out there, first of all, you don't really know what to do when you step on the first tee, and then from there try to collect yourself and find your game and find a rhythm.

“Carlota, she was a super star, she hung in there tough.  That's why it's four‑ball, you play on your partners, and this is a fantastic point and I'm proud of her to get her first point.”

For Lewis, the loss to Pettersen and Ciganda in the afternoon was a continuation of her struggles in Solheim. Lewis, who went 1-3-0 in her first Solheim Cup in 2011, suffered two losses on Day 1 of play to drop her overall record to 1-5-0.

The Americans tried to get a half point in the second match of the afternoon. Angela Stanford and Gerina Piller birdied three straight holes from 14 to 16 to put them within striking distance of taking control of the match.  Taking the match to the par-3 17th hole down two to the Europeans, Piller missed a 5-foot putt which would have saved par to halve the hole with Caroline Hedwall and Caroline Masson. 

While the Americans couldn’t take advantage in the first two matches of the afternoon they still managed to get a split in the session by earning two critical points. The third match of the afternoon seemed to be decided at the turn when momentum really shifted the way of the Americans. Brittany Lang holed a bunker shot on the par-4 14th which took her and Brittany Lincicome to 3-up with four left to play.  

“I was fortunate to make that, because Giulia and Anna were both close,” said Lang. “So for me to hole that out and put the pressure on them and have them not make it, that's, it's very fortunate.  It was a great shot.  Been working on those a lot, so that was fun to see that go in.”

The pair managed to stick both of their approach shots on the following hole to within 4-feet. Lang sank a birdie putt to win the hole. Lang and Lincicome won their match 4&3 to put the first point on the board in the afternoon and capture the largest victory of the day.

Captain’s pick Michelle Wie, who sat in the morning matches, was able to  provide a lift in the final afternoon match. She chipped in on the 12th hole for birdie to extend the lead in her match to 2 up with five holes left to play. Paired with Cristie Kerr, who recorded her first loss with playing partner Paula Creamer in the foursomes matches, the pair were able to hold off a European run by Catriona Matthew and Charley Hull and ended the match in the 17th hole, 2&1.

“We just fed off each other's energy today,” said Wie. “She got my back when I didn't play well and I got hers.  And we just did well today and we needed that point, so it feels great.”

Notables…

  • The team who has led after Day 1 has won 9 out of 11 times in the Solheim Cup. That doesn’t count the 2002 Solheim Cup when the two teams were tied at the end of Day 1.
  • Team Europe’s two-point lead over the Americans on Day 1 (5-3) marks their largest lead after Day 1 since 2005. That year Team USA came back to capture a 15 ½ to 12 ½ victory
  • Prior to losing 2&1 in their foursome match on Friday morning, Cristie Kerr and Paula Creamer had been undefeated as a Solheim Cup pairing.
  • With her victory in Friday morning’s foursomes, Morgan Pressel has now gone 6-0 in her last six Solheim Cup matches.
  • Michelle Wie and Cristie Kerr improved their record as a pair to 3-1 with their afternoon four-ball victory.
  • With her two points on Friday, Suzann Pettersen has moved into third all-time in points earned on the European squad. She trails Laura Davies (25 points) and Annika Sorenstam (24).

   

2013 PLAYER RECORDS
  Foursomes Four-ball Singles 2013 Total   Career record
United States W-L-H W-L-H W-L-H W-L-H  W-L-H (Points)
Paula Creamer 0-1-0     0-1-0 11-4-5   (13 ½)
Cristie Kerr 0-1-0 1-0-0   1-1-0 12-13-3 (13 ½)
Jessica Korda 1-0-0     1-0-0 1-0-0     (1)
Brittany Lang 0-1-0 1-0-0   1-1-0 3-4-2      (4)
Stacy Lewis 0-1-0 0-1-0   0-2-0 1-5-0     (1)
Brittany Lincicome    1-0-0   1-0-0 5-6-1      (5 ½)
Gerina Piller   0-1-0   0-1-0 0-1-0   (0)
Morgan Pressel 1-0-0     1-0-0 8-2-2      (9)
Lizette Salas 0-1-0     0-1-0 0-1-0     (0)
Angela Stanford  0-1-0 0-1-0   0-2-0 3-9-3     (4 ½)
Lexi Thompson    0-1-0   0-1-0

 0-1-0   (0)

Michelle Wie   1-0-0   1-0-0 5-3-1     (5 ½)
           
Europe          
Carlota Ciganda   1-0-0   1-0-0 1-0-0  (1)
Jodi Ewart Shadoff 0-1-0     0-1-0 0-1-0   (0)
Caroline Hedwall  1-0-0 1-0-0   2-0-0

4-1-1     (4 ½)

Charley Hull    0-1-0   0-1-0 0-1-0     (0)
Karine Icher 1-0-0     1-0-0 2-2-0     (2)
Catriona Matthew  0-1-0 0-1-0   0-2-0 11-10-6 (15)
Caroline Masson   1-0-0   1-0-0 1-0-0  (1)
Azahara Munoz  1-0-0     1-0-0 3-1-1     (3 ½)
Anna Nordqvist 1-0-0 0-1-0   1-1-0

5-5-0     (5)

Suzann Pettersen  1-0-0 1-0-0   2-0-0 14-8-5   (16 ½)
Beatriz Recari 1-0-0     1-0-0 1-0-0     (1)
Giulia Sergas   0-1-0   0-1-0 0-3-0     (0)
                                                                                                                                           

Afternoon Four-ball Press Conferences

Liselotte Neumann, European Captain
Meg Mallon, U.S. Captain
Sue Witters, Vice President of LPGA Tour Rules and Competition
Brad Alexander, Manager of LPGA Tour Rules and Competition

THE MODERATOR:  Ladies and gentlemen, first of all, we appreciate your patience.  It's taken a little while to get this started, but for good reason.  Before we address the situation that happened today, I want to get some brief comments from both captains just about how your day went overall, and then we will hear from two of our rules officials.  So Lotta, 5‑3 lead.  How do you feel?
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  Obviously we were extremely happy with that.  The girls played, I think the morning was our couple of key matches, we got off to a really good start.  We got those first two matches in and even the fourth match was just solid play and just came off to that good start.
And obviously a tie in the afternoon, but I think the morning matches just really put us in the right position.  So we're ‑‑ I think the whole team we feel extremely happy being 5‑3 at this point.

THE MODERATOR:  Meg?
MEG MALLON:  Just from what I could see from the matches in the morning, it just seemed like we struggled more with the speed of the greens in the morning and making putts.  And it seems like the Europeans had adapted really well to putting early on.
So, to me, that looked like the difference from what I could see out there.  But it seemed like we got better as the day went on, and felt better about our afternoon matches.  And 5‑3 is not awful, but we would like to be in a better position and hopefully, we can get all that back tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR:  At this point I would like to welcome in Brad Alexander and Sue Witters from the Solheim Cup Rules Committee, who will address the situation that happened on the 15th hole today.
BRAD ALEXANDER:  Thanks.  Yes, there was a rules situation on the 15th hole today involving the player who hit a second shot into a lateral water hazard up by the green.  The point that the ball last crossed the margin of the hazard was accurately established, and one of the options under Rule 26‑1 C is for the player to drop her ball on the opposite margin of the hazard equidistant from the hole.  This point was also accurately established.
Rule 26‑1 C allows the player to drop within two club lengths of that point on the equal and opposite margin.  However, a mistake was made and the player was allowed to drop behind that point in line with the flag stick.

Q.  What are you saying? (Laughter.)  Does that mean that something happened?  That the result was wrong or what?
BRAD ALEXANDER:  The player ended up dropping in a wrong place.

Q.  So?  What?
BRAD ALEXANDER:  But there was no affect on the player, because she was given an incorrect ruling.

Q.  So she had two club lengths, how far did she end up dropping from that spot?
BRAD ALEXANDER:  She dropped behind that spot by approximately 40 yards.  So 40 yards further from the hole than she actually was.

Q.  Who made the ruling?
BRAD ALEXANDER:  Originally the match referee started with the ruling and then I got called in for the second opinion.

Q.  So this is this a decision that can't be corrected, so everything stands?
BRAD ALEXANDER:  Everything stands.
THE MODERATOR:  At this point I would like to let the captains address their feelings, starting with Lotta.  I know you were there on the hole.

LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  Yeah, I was right there.  But I ‑‑ when I saw the ball cross the line into the water hazard, I just wanted to ‑‑ can I say the player's name or.
THE MODERATOR:  Yes.
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  Carlota ‑‑ I didn't know (laughter).  Everybody knows who it is, but we talked about the player and the player.  So for Carlota to know that she ‑‑ when it's a red hazard markings, that she could have the option to go on the other side of the hazard.  So I ran over there just to make sure that she knew that, and she said to me, oh, I didn't know that.  But at the same time as the referee had told her that she had that option.
So we started to measure and we went on the other side of the hazard and everything and we couldn't ‑‑ the referee couldn't determine if that was closer to the hole or not.  And he decided to call in Brad for another opinion about it.  And basically, when they came out, they looked at the line and then they decided that wherever the ball had crossed over here, and then where the line came in, it was actually about 10 yards to the left.  And he told her the option was to drop it in two club lengths of there or she can go as far back on the line, with the line, and the pin as far back as she wanted.  So she ended up going back probably 40 yards and she dropped the ball there and then she hit it on the green.

THE MODERATOR:  Meg, your thoughts on the situation?
MEG MALLON:  Well, obviously, I'm not happy about it.  The thing I'm most unhappy about is that it took ‑‑ and we can time it on the TV, I don't know ‑‑ I think it took about 25 minutes for this to happen.  And from our perspective the momentum, which was coming in our favor at that point in time, obviously had stopped.
Stacy Lewis, who is very adept at the rules, was quite angry about what was happening and I don't blame her.  They had the momentum going in their favor, and I think it's not ‑‑ people make mistakes in rulings, that's not my issue.  We have four matches out there and we have officials with every group, and it shouldn't take that long for something like that to happen.
So I think that's my only ‑‑ and it's a big one ‑‑ issue, with what transpired, is that not only the momentum of that match, but there were three groups on that hole waiting in the fairway.
Angela's and Gerina's match, the momentum had changed and they had to sit in the fairway for that long for them to, not only make the wrong ruling, but in favor, you know, and changing the momentum of the matches.
So, obviously, I'm not pleased, but it's the Rules of Golf, and we have to accept that as a team, and we have to go out tomorrow and play our best and try and get those points back.

THE MODERATOR:  At this point we'll take some more questions and then we will get to the morning foursomes pairings for Saturday.  Randy?

Q.  Meg, was there a clear advantage from where she got to take her drop from?  What was the big deal about that?
MEG MALLON:  Yes.

Q.  What was the advantage?
MEG MALLON:  Yes.  You'll see it on TV.
DOTTIE PEPPER:  I think it needs to be clarified that that was not a water hazard, it was a lateral hazard, and those options are distinctly different.  And that presented part of the questions that were asked to be clarified at the end and still left the question mark.

Q.  Why were none of these questions raised at the 15th hole during the 25 minutes that this was taking place, if you had people who are adept at the rules, and could have suspected that this drop was not right?
MEG MALLON:  There were.  It was quite a lot of confusion going on, like Lotta said, they were looking for two golf balls.  You had the five minutes, or the amount of time that you had, to look for a golf ball.
Then you had a hazard that meanders and trying to figure out what, where to drop.  So when Brad came on the scene, things happened fast.  Even though he made the wrong ruling, at least it was something done quickly.  That was my issue with the whole thing.  Is that ‑‑ you know, here's my team sitting there, after they are just charging and making a come back, and then they have to sit.  And so not only does it change the psyche of my team, but it changes the psyche of the other team, because they can have time to regroup.

Q.  A follow‑up?  So is there the suggestion that, I mean, you still had two players who had putts that would have won that hole and would have in some ways made this a moot point.  But was Stacy's ‑‑ was she upset because she felt like she missed that putt because she had gotten cold from waiting for so long?
MEG MALLON:  She was upset because she wasn't getting the right answers from the officials, about what they were doing.  And it was obvious that the official that was on board in the first go didn't know what he was doing.  And that's what took so much time.  And like I said, Stacy is very adept at the rules, and was getting upset about the fact that the right things weren't happening.

Q.  Just to clarify, Stacy questioned the legitimacy of the drop at the time, is that correct?
MEG MALLON:  She was questioning everything that was going on.  I mean, where, how the hazard was drawn out.  Why they were getting a drop where they were.  Everything that was going on.  And ultimately these guys, it's their job.  They're telling us this is the right thing to do.  So the problem was, is how long it took.
And Lexi Thompson is sitting over a chip shot for ‑‑ maybe I'm exaggerating, 20 to 25 minutes.  And Stacy's waiting for a putt that she's thrown up there, and if you know anything in sports, momentum's everything.  And she's hit a shot up there close.  Lexi is up there close to the green.  We had the absolute advantage on that hole.  They're both in the hazard.

Q.  Dottie, you were on the spot there.  What would have happened had there been no official at all and it had been resolved between the players.  How quickly would that have been ruled on?
MEG MALLON:  They still would have called an official.
DOTTIE PEPPER:  They couldn't determine where Ciganda's ball was.

Q.  So it wasn't enough, as you said, to know, to have ascertained what kind of hazard it was?
DOTTIE PEPPER:  Well I think it's very important to remember that that was in fact marked or is in fact marked as a lateral water hazard, it is not a water hazard.  There are significantly different options there.  You had two rulings going on at the same time and I think that's what compounded it.
You had the Pettersen ball in the hazard, which had followed the Ciganda ball into it.  And one needed to be located and one needed to be determined if she was going to play out of the hazard at all.  So I think that that set the motion of having two different rulings going on at the same time.  So that's where things started to run a foul early.  But there was not clear definition about the definition.  And I think that ‑‑ they just had to try to find Suzann's ball to see it if she was going to play out of the hazard.
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  They found it right away.
DOTTIE PEPPER:  But they needed to determine if she was going to go ahead and play and then find Ciganda's ball.  But they were all going on simultaneously.  There was no ruling.  There was no ruling it was just a definition of where the golf ball was.
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  Yeah.
MEG MALLON:  Yeah.

Q.  Meg, it was a tough day for Stacy, the top American in the world, what was her state of mind tonight and how important is that to the American team?
MEG MALLON:  She was upset about the day, because actually she was starting to turn her game around as well at that time.  She started playing well and making birdies.  So that's my job to go back and get her refocused for tomorrow, which I'm sure she's already there.  She's a very bright person and knows that it's in her best interests to play her best golf tomorrow.  But I have to go back and address the team and let them know this.  And then deal with that as we can go forward into tomorrow, because they're going to hear about it, I can't keep it from them, so I got to talk to them about it.

Q.  For Meg and Dottie, you've been to this course a bunch, you've walked it, you've done everything with it.  And Stacy had mentioned that she wasn't even sure if the boundaries on that hazard were drawn up correctly.  So I guess the question is, are you looking for some more clarity on that hazard or did you ever ask any questions about it beforehand?
MEG MALLON:  I mean, you know, well, I guess the officials could say that, I don't think there's anything you can change once they have marked it.  So really it's a moot point.  To me.
DOTTIE PEPPER:  I just think that the conversation that Stacy and I had with the official afterwards was a clarification issue.  And go back to the definitions of what a lateral hazard is and what your options are, what that equidistant point on the opposite side of the hazard is, because that is one of your options.  Because there were so many things going on at the same time.  A, locating the golf ball, where it cleared the margin of the hazard; and then bringing the equidistant portion of the rule, as an option.  So as a player, you ask for all of those to be defined.  And I just, I don't think we got the clear definition or how the process was handled and that's why Stacy was looking for more answers.
MEG MALLON:  And just to give you a time frame, I was with the last match when I heard this was going on.  This was the first match.  And you know what it's like to get across this golf course.  Brad hadn't come on to the scene even close by the time I got to this match.  So that's how long all of this was taking.

Q.  For Lotta, I believe it was 27 minutes between the time that they started this ruling and then and Carlota hit her shot in.  Talk about her mindset, because then she had to hit a pretty, I mean her putt off the fringe to halve that hole.  She kind of had to hold it together for a long time, just like the Americans had to wait a long time.
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  No, of course, she was obviously looking for her ball and worried about everything that was going on.  So obviously she hit a great shot in there and she knew she had to make the putt and she made it.  So it was obviously a huge putt for her.

Q.  If Meg or anyone, if any one of the players, captains, anyone, recognized that it was the wrong spot from which Ciganda hit it from, did anyone make a complaint before the next tee and if not, why not?
MEG MALLON:  There was a lot of complaining going on.  I don't know if it was a proper complaint, but there was a lot of commotion going on with the galleries and everything else.  Stacy was complaining all the way through.  And Lexi wasn't happy as well.
But the right complaint?  No.  Because we didn't ‑‑ we didn't discover that they had made the wrong ruling.

THE MODERATOR:  At this point we'll announce the pairings for tomorrow morning's foursome matches.  In match number nine the Europeans will play?
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  The first out is Anna Nordqvist and Caroline Hedwall.
MEG MALLON:  Against Morgan Pressel and Jessica Korda.

THE MODERATOR:  Second match of the morning?
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  The Europeans playing Azahara Munoz and Karine Icher.
MEG MALLON:  Against Stacy Lewis and Paula Creamer.

THE MODERATOR:  In the third match?
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  Catriona Matthew with Caroline Masson.
MEG MALLON:  Against Brittany Lincicome and Lizette Salas.
LISELOTTE NEUMANN:  And our fourth match we have Suzann Pettersen with Beatriz Recari.
MEG MALLON:  Against Michelle Wie and Brittany Lang.

Q.  What's Jessica having for breakfast?
(Laughter.)
MEG MALLON:  Not bananas.

Q.  But she won.
(Laughter.)
MEG MALLON:  Hey, yeah.

Q.  Give her two bananas?
MEG MALLON:  Bill Russell used to throw up before every game.

Q.  I wanted to ask Meg about Michelle Wie putting a point on the board.  I know she was a somewhat controversial pick and just what you thought of her play today.
MEG MALLON:  I thought it was great.  That's why I put her out in the afternoon in best ball, to see where she was and how comfortable she was on the golf course.  And I liked what I saw.  That's why I'm putting her out tomorrow morning.

 

Team USA, Michelle Wie & Cristie Kerr

THE MODERATOR:  We would like to welcome Cristie Kerr and Michelle Wie into the interview room.  Congratulations ladies, a nice victory in your afternoon match.  First off, take me through the match a little bit.  Cristie, you had gone out in the morning, had a little bit of a tough loss and then to come out this afternoon and you guys seemed to get some momentum early on.
CRISTIE KERR:  Yeah, we did.  We ended up birdieing the first hole and they ended up parring it, got the momentum right from the start.
Ended up having kind of a bad hole on 3.  Got it right back then.  Birdieing the par‑3, whatever hole that was.  6, I guess.
They squared it at the turn and I made a huge putt on 10.
Michelle's barely missed some putts right and left out there, and they were just not dropping for her, but she was putting beautifully.
And then we were able to hang tough, halving holes with birdies and finally, Michelle chipped in on 13 and we kind of hung in there.

THE MODERATOR:  Michelle, take me through that chip in.  I know we all were watching and Cristie, your reaction was pretty good as well.  What did that do for the match and kind of the momentum swinging and keeping that going?
MICHELLE WIE:  Yeah, it was a huge momentum swing there, just because I hit such a bad wedge shot and I got relief from the grand stand.  And I felt pretty good over the chip.  I kind of saw what Catriona's putt kind of did.  And once I hit it ‑‑ I mean so many putts before that it ‑‑ everything looked like it was going to go in, so I just needed one to go in.  And that one looked like it was going to go in and when it went in we just went crazy.  I think we really needed that and it felt awesome.

THE MODERATOR:  How much were you guys watching the other matches throughout the afternoon?  And to split 2‑2, kind of what's the feeling like heading into tomorrow down 5‑3?
CRISTIE KERR:  Actually, I don't think we really paid much attention to the other matches.  We had our hands full with playing a tough team, and it would have been great to get another point this afternoon, but we hung tough, we got some points, and we're coming out strong tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR:  Questions?

Q.  Can you just talk about your frame of mind and the mood after that morning session, that tough morning session.
CRISTIE KERR:  You're talking to me because you didn't play in the morning.  Okay.  It's been a long day.

Q.  For the whole American team, not you personally?
CRISTIE KERR:  We knew we had to rally.  I thought we did a good job of rallying in the afternoon.  They're tough.  But we knew we had to get some points, and we did that, and I felt like I was close to playing really, really well.  This morning ‑‑ no, I'm saying this morning.
MICHELLE WIE:  You did play really well.
CRISTIE KERR:  And I came out and got the momentum right away and started hitting some better iron shots, and the greens are about as firm as they can get, I guess.
You hit a wrong club, you're going to go screaming over a green, as you saw happen a couple times.
I got my putter to work, so it was really satisfying seeing some of those putts go in when we needed them to.

Q.  Michelle, knowing how badly you wanted to be on this team, just how much does it mean to you to make a point?  Is that a relief and what does this do for your confidence?
MICHELLE WIE:  I went out to watch a couple of matches this morning, and just seeing so much blue on the leaderboard, it was just the motivation I needed when I got off today.
But honestly, I just had so much fun out there with Cristie, grinding out there.  It was nice to see her make some putts, it was nice to do that really big chip in.  And it was fun out there.  We grinded out there, it feels great to have a point.  And we're just going to kill it the next two days.
CRISTIE KERR:  She has fun with me because I think she can put up with me.
(Laughter.)  It's actually true.

Q.  Cristie, talk about playing this morning and then playing this afternoon and grinding out on a 36 holes on a course like this; a long course, a high course, an up‑and‑down course.
CRISTIE KERR:  Yeah, it's tough.  With the altitude, and it's a hilly course, and I actually felt pretty good today.  It's probably the first day I really haven't noticed the altitude so much.  It's taken me three or four days to kind of get used to it.  So yeah, it's tough.  I'm going to sleep well tonight.

Q.  Cristie, you and Paula made a little run late in your morning match, did any of that carry over into your afternoon play?
CRISTIE KERR:  For sure.  In foursomes in the morning, the alternate shot, you have to get up in your match.  If you lose control of the match early it's hard to get it back.  So every little bit helps.  If you're 4‑down you get to 3‑down, get to 2 town, get to 1‑down.  Take that into another match, it all adds up.

Q.  You both were young once and?
CRISTIE KERR:  Thank you.
(Laughter.)

Q.  And were out playing.  Can you speak to Charlie Hull.  Had you seen that kind of performance from a 17 year old before?  What did you think?
CRISTIE KERR:  Yeah.  Right here.  (Indicating to Michelle).  She's a good player.  She's thrown into a lot of pressure and an interesting situation this week.  And Solheim Cup makes you a stronger player.  It makes you believe that you can, and learn how to, handle anything that comes your way.  And she will be a better golfer for it.

Q.  Are the Americans staggered by this score and the outcome in the first day?
CRISTIE KERR:  I don't think so.  We have seen it before.  A lot.  We have to have a really strong day tomorrow to give us the momentum to go into singles.  And we are all prepared to do it.  No matter what it takes.

Quick quotes

Q.         Michelle, I'll start with you.  You just appear to be a far different player in this format than in normal stroke play situations.  Is that a conscious effort or is that just the enormity of what these matches bring?
MICHELLE WIE:  I love match play, I love Solheim Cup, I love my country and I love Cristie Kerr.
(Laughter.)  And I just had a blast out here.  My goal is to get them going, you know.  It's just so much fun, it's an opportunity to come once in a lifetime, so I really had fun.

Q.  Cristie, you said this morning you were hoping to take some of the momentum from the finish this morning, where you finished extremely well, into the afternoon, you did it.  Is that the best you've putted in a while?
CRISTIE KERR:  Yeah, I think so.  Especially under these kind of conditions, under this kind of pressure.  I played really, really well.  I made a lot of putts and I just tried to keep us in there and make a big putt when I needed to.  And I did this a few times and Michelle made an absolutely clutch putt there at the end.

Q.  You guys didn't really have any breathing room.  They never let up.
CRISTIE KERR:  No, Beany's a great player, and they never let up.  And Charley is a great player as well, a real talent, and they gave us a tough match.  And it was all about who could stick it out the longest and make the big putts, clutch putts, when we needed to, and we were able to do that.

Q.  And you made a few yourself including a great bunker shot.
MICHELLE WIE:  Yeah, those two bunker shots, they both looked like they were going in.  We just fed off each other's energy today.  She got my back when I didn't play well and I got hers.  And we just did well today and we needed that point, so it feels great.

 

Team USA, Brittany Lang and Brittany Lincicome

THE MODERATOR:  All right.  We would like to welcome Brittany Lang and Brittany Lincicome into the interview room.  Congratulations.  Largest victory of the day, 4 & 3, in the afternoon match.  Just take me through a little bit.  I'll start with you Brittany, since you didn't go off.
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  Which Brittany?
THE MODERATOR:  Brittany to my left.  That's going to be tough.  Brittany Lincicome.  Can you just take me through, you didn't play in the morning, but got to come out in the afternoon.  What was the feeling like kind of heading in with the team down 3‑1 after the morning match, and how excited were you guys to kind of get some momentum in the middle of that round?
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  Yeah, obviously when I woke up this morning and saw that we weren't doing so well, I tried to get out here as early as I could, and get on the course and try to cheer on some of the girls.
And when Meg told me we were playing together, because we originally were not playing together, I think we are were both pretty excited.  Our families were excited because we've grown up playing a lot of golf together, and obviously we lost the first hole today and we just kind of looked at each other and said two balls in the fairway, two balls on the green at all times, and we'll make them make the mistakes.  And then we had some momentum kind of going into 9 and 10, I made two birdies, which helped just kind of put us in the right direction and we just didn't let off the gas.

THE MODERATOR:  Brittany Lang, I would like to ask you about that bunker shot that you holed.  It seemed to kind of help momentum as well.  You holed that, Michelle then holed a chip, it seemed like everything was kind of finally starting to go the way of the Americans at that point.
BRITTANY LANG:  Yeah, we played great today.  Brittany played great.  I was fortunate to make that, because they were both close, Giulia and Anna were both close.  So for me to hole that out and put the pressure on them and have them not make it, that's, it's very fortunate.  It was a great shot.  Been working on those a lot, so that was fun to see that go in.
THE MODERATOR:  We were just talking to Cristie and Michelle about the fact of going into Saturday down 5‑3, kind of what's the feeling of the team?  What's the conversations like and how do you guys kind of head into tomorrow knowing what's ahead of you?
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  I think obviously everyone is pretty disappointed with their play today, so obviously a lot of girls are going to be fired up to want to go out there and tee it up tomorrow and get some more points kind of going our way.  It would be nice if Brit and I get together out again, because I feel like we played pretty well.  But we're honestly not sure of who is going to play with who yet.  But I know we're all fired up and ready to go for tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR:  Questions for these two?  I guess, Brittany Lang, I'll ask, when you guys got done with the morning matches, kind of what did, did anybody say anything, like what kind of was the feeling after that when you headed into the afternoon and how important was it for you guys?  You got a split, but what was kind of the focus point talking?
BRITTANY LANG:  Yeah, well Angela and I played good, it was a good match.  We were, I was extremely positive, because I was hitting it good, playing good, I was comfortable out there.  And Dottie came right up to me and said, hey, you're playing in the afternoon.
And I was so excited, because I am, I'm hitting it good and I'm playing good.  And I didn't know if I was going to play or not.  So I was ‑‑ and then when I found out I was playing with Brittany I was super excited.
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  It makes it easier for the fans, they can all cheer for Brittany and it makes it so much easier.
(Laughter.)

Q.  You guys said you were surprised that you were playing this afternoon together.  What clicked?  What made it work?
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  I think just both of our personalities.  We just kind of feed off each other's energy and we played in 2009 together and did not get to play together in 2011.  And we were both pretty disappointed about that.
So when we filled out our little survey like two months ago asking, who was your best person that you want to play with, I put, I think the only person I put was Brittany on the sheet.
So we have been very clear to Meg that we really wanted to kind of play together again, because we felt like we did so good in 2009 and I just think we feed off of each other and if I did something good, when I did ‑‑ or bad ‑‑ she backed me up and vice versa.  We fed off each other's energy very, very well today.  And we're so laid back, easygoing, cracking jokes, singing country songs out there down the fairway.  It was really light out there today.

Q.  Brittany Lang, you were one of the players who had back to back matches.  Will you talk about the endurance and what the altitude does and what a long course like this does.
BRITTANY LANG:  Yeah, it is tough, but your adrenaline's going, you're so excited to be out there.  And the morning, you're only hitting half the shots, alternate shot, so it's not that bad.
But I was a little bit more jacked up in the afternoon, my adrenaline was going, I don't know why, maybe more fans or something.  But I don't think anybody really gets tired because of the excitement and crowds.  I didn't anyway.  I was very excited.  I was so thankful I got to play in the afternoon.  So I made sure that ‑‑ you make sure you eat plenty, drink plenty, you sit down for a minute, but I felt just fine.
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  The altitude was something because we were trying to sing a song going up 15 fairway and neither one of us could get words out.
(Laughter.

Q.  For Brittany Lang, can you talk, what is the psychology in making a ‑‑ it seems foursomes is kind of tricky in pairing people together, because it must be kind of hard to get in a rhythm when you're only hitting every other shot.  Can you just talk about what you think, what works in that kind of a pairing?
BRITTANY LANG:  Yeah, you have to be paying attention to the shots.  Like if I wasn't hitting a wedge shot, still go up, see the yardage, kind of feel what you would hit, say, I would hit a full pitching wedge.  And when she hits it up there, she helps me read the putt.
So you're not taking 10 minutes off, you're still kind of seeing your shots and getting in a rhythm.  But, again, the personalities.  I played with Angela Stanford and we always have fun together, we always play well together.  We didn't play well, we got beat.  They played really well.  But personalities, it's a big thing to make sure that you're happy on the course and having fun and you're clicking and you're getting a nice flow with alternate shot.  So personalities and making sure you're showing up for every shot.

THE MODERATOR:  One question I was going to ask, since you mentioned the fans and the crowds this afternoon, you guys have both been through these events here in the U.S., but it seemed like there was a significant crowd out there today.  The chants were pretty loud when you got things going in the afternoon.  What was the atmosphere out there today?
BRITTANY LINCICOME:  It was crazy.  From even hole one on I was doing as much as I could.  When I got to the green, I was throwing my arms up on every single green, just getting the crowd going.  Because I know, if I'm playing another match and I hear a big roar on another hole, that maybe somebody in that group, you know, one of our Americans did something really good.
So it's not even about yourself there, it's more so for your team as well.  So you look at the fans and they make eye contact and they light up.  So that's a big part of us playing well this week is the fans backing us.

Team Europe, Caroline Hedwall & Caroline Masson

Q.  You played fabulously well together.  How do you feel about that?
CAROLINE HEDWALL:  I think we're just playing really solid.  Obviously the Americans played really well as well, but it's been a great day and I enjoyed playing with Caroline.

Q.  Caroline, you've been waiting all day to make your rookie debut and I know how much you've been looking forward to this.  You putted great and these greens are really difficult.  You must be feeling great.
CAROLINE MASSON:  Caroline and I, I think we just worked really well together, dropped a few good putts, which is always good.
That's just what you got to do in match play, I think.  And it was a lot of fun and I can't wait for tomorrow.

Q.  And everybody says the Europeans are great at foursomes and not so good at four‑ball, better ball, any idea why that is?
CAROLINE HEDWALL:  I think we proved it different.  We played really well, and Suzann and Carlota just won their point, so I think we're doing pretty good.

Q.  So basically you don't believe that then.
CAROLINE HEDWALL:  No.

Team Europe, Anna Nordqvist

Q.         Just talk about this round.  I know it's a little bit different than how it played this morning for you.  Just talk about how different it was.
ANNA NORDQVIST:  I'm very disappointed.  I didn't make my putts for birdie and we never really got any momentum.  We didn't seem to make the putts when we needed to.
We hit it pretty good on 14 and then she makes a bunker shot.  So it was a tough match.  They played great.

Q.  What was it like playing with Giulia?
ANNA NORDQVIST:  It was great.  But we never seemed to get any momentum.  They made putts for birdies and they played tough.

Team Europe, Suzann Pettersen & Carlota Ciganda

Q.  You're struggling to come through when you needed to, but even though you were struggling, Suzann, you were amazing today.
SUZANN PETTERSEN:  This game, this, it just never really gets old.  It just brings out the best of you.  And I, you know what, I'm just really enjoying playing with these youngsters.  I'm so proud of them.  It's not easy to go out there, first of all, you don't really know what to do when you step on the first tee, and then from there try to collect yourself and find your game and find a rhythm.
Carlota, she was a super star, she hung in there tough.  That's why it's four‑ball, you play on your partners, and this is a fantastic point and I'm proud of her to get her first point.

Q.  I noticed you were giving her encouragement and that's probably why you started playing a lot better on the back nine.
CARLOTA CIGANDA:  Yeah, it was very stressful at the time.  So I'm very happy to play with her, and it was a great match and we won.  And so that's the most important, so it's great.

Q.  What a day.  Tell me about it.
CARLOTA CIGANDA:  I didn't play my best golf today, it wasn't easy.  The greens were hard, they were fast.  I was a bit nervous and I couldn't get a good rhythm.  And then the back nine I played some better shots.  I was trying hard.  And I made good putts and 13 and 14.  So I think at the end of the day the important thing is that we won the point and Europe is winning, so that's a thing that I'm so happy to help the team.

Q.  How nervous were you?
CARLOTA CIGANDA:  I was very nervous.

 

Morning Foursomes Press Conferences

Team Europe, Azahara Munoz & Karine Icher

THE MODERATOR:  Congratulations, at that Aza and Karine, you had a fantastic victory this morning in the foursomes.  Obviously 1‑2‑1 over the top U.S. players, Paula Creamer and Cristie Kerr.  Can you just talk about how that felt to pull off that victory this morning.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  It felt amazing.  I think it's really important for us to get going with a strong start, and we all did it.  We were 3‑1.  It was really nice from the beginning seeing all the blue on the leaderboard.  So I think that we kind of fed off each other and it kept us going.

THE MODERATOR:  Same question.
KARINE ICHER:  Same way, yeah.  It was important to win the first hole and we were up for many holes, until we had a good stretch on 7, 8, 9, 10.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  8, 9, 10.
KARINE ICHER:  8, 9, 10.  Yeah.

THE MODERATOR:  So what's the feeling in the team room now?  You holed a great putt on 17 to get the European team 3‑1 ahead.  What's the feeling in the team room?
KARINE ICHER:  Confidence.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Yeah, it's really good.  But it's only the morning.  We still have so many more golf to play and everything can change really quickly.  So it's really good to feel confident about what we did and feel that we can beat the Americans.  But at the same time we just have to keep playing how we are and just focus on the present.

Q.  Talk about the putt on 17.  It seemed like they had so much momentum that if it went to 18 it was going to be even tougher.  So for Karine, how difficult was it to get that ball even remotely close to the hole from where you were and then at that for holing it?
KARINE ICHER:  The greens were super fast.  On the 17th I had no way to put it closer or just to play with the slope and get the ball dead exactly where you have to be.  So I thought, okay, I have to give her like the opportunity to make the second putt.  So give her a putt uphill on the second putt.  So I did it.  And she had a really good putt.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  She left it in the easiest spot to make it.  And as she said, the putt was really long and it was breaking so much that there was no way she was going to hit it any closer.  So she did the best she could.  It was just a really tough putt.
KARINE ICHER:  Even on the tee shot it was super hard to be pin high.  Cristie had a really good shot and the ball ran forever.  And then so Aza, she tried to play with the slope and the ball stopped, so.

Q.  Did you guys speak French or Spanish out there?
KARINE ICHER:  English.
(Laughter.)
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  We tried, but English.
(Laughter.)

Q.  The putts on 8, 9 and 10 all looked like they were above the hole.  Could you guys just go down the list and tell us what you were looking at on those three?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Yeah, on 8 it wasn't that much downhill, but you go through that one.
KARINE ICHER:  Yeah, I told her I'm going to go with the speed and just focus on the speed.  And I thought Paula had a really hard bunker shot to do and she played it perfectly.  So then, maybe I changed a little bit my mind, and tried to make it.  And I did.  So it was lucky.  And on 9, you had almost same putt.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Yeah, on 9 it was really downhill, so the good thing about it, I knew just that I literally hit it like if it was a 2‑footer.  So just put it in movement and it was going in, it wasn't even bring breaking that much.  She got lucky, because if it went that much shorter it would have gone all the way back.  But it just got struck on the front.  So I just put it in play and it went in.

Q.  The one on 10?
KARINE ICHER:  The one on 10, it was a good putt.  A little bit uphill, but.
(Laughter.)  Not like the 8 or 9 where like you try to find the speed and then the ball went in.  On 10 it was just like a good putt, and she put the ball so close to the hole, it was not easy to make, but it was easier than the chip that she had.

Q.  Karine, if you can remember from 2002 at Interlachen did it seem louder there because of a smaller golf course than here which is so big?
KARINE ICHER:  It's loud.  Yeah.  It's about the same.  I can remember Interlachen, it was very loud too, it was my second year on tour and I was a rookie for the Solheim Cup.
So I was very impressed, but it's fun to play with this crowd and so much people singing or crying or saying your name.  It's nice.  One time per year it's nice.  Should be like this every week on tour.  But maybe one day.

Q.  Talking of the noise, and we know that the Americans have the sort of big guns out against you, how did you feel going to the first tee and knowing that they were a very strong pairing and they would have so much support?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  I know we played with maybe the best foursome, but you never know.  Match play is different.  And anybody could play good or bad any day.
So we both knew what we had to play really well and sometimes that's enough and sometimes it's not.  But today it was.  We played really well and they played well too.  They just didn't make enough birdies until the end.  Cristie hit amazing shots on 15, 16 and 17.
KARINE ICHER:  16 was really good.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  14, 15 and 16.  So we were getting kind of worried out there, but we made par on 17 to close it out.  But, yeah, every match is really hard.  Not just because we were playing against Cristie or Paula.  You're going to try to give your best, you give your best, it doesn't matter who they are, all 12 of them are really good players.

Q.  Who is your favorite Ryder Cup player of all time?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Ryder Cup?  I think I have to say Seve.  Otherwise they will kick me out of my country.
(Laughter.)

Q.  Sergio?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Sergio is probably my favorite, just because I grew up with him.  So I love watching him play and in Ryder Cup he always brings his best.

Q.  Tell us more about growing up with him.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Well, when I started playing golf, Sergio was an amateur, but he was winning everything in Europe.  So even though he was an amateur, I don't know why, I always liked him a lot.  Even if I didn't know him I only knew his name because obviously he wasn't on TV.
And then, when he turned pro he was really young, and then played really well at the PGA, so everybody was always following him.  And I've always really liked him.

Q.  Do you know him?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Yeah, a little bit.

Q.  Can you talk about the greens a little bit more and did you learn anything today or anything surprise you on the speed of them that you didn't realize the past three days of practice rounds?
KARINE ICHER:  They're fast.  Very fast.  And I think that they're as quick as Tuesday, or Tuesday everybody was surprised that the greens were very fast.  And today was the case too.  And especially because it's really hot now, and a little bit windy, they're going to dry out and I think that this afternoon they're going to be even quicker.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  It's just so hard to read them because they're so quick and then they have such a subtle breaks that I read a couple completely the wrong way today.  So it just, you just have to be patient out there, because no one is really going to make those many putts, it's just really tough.

Q.  You said you would like to play this kind of match play all the time?  Do you think that we could use more of this in golf in general, more of the match play?
KARINE ICHER:  Match play is different, but it's fun to play match play.  I think that you don't have any more of the score in your mind and you just go with it and you can make a bogey and win the hole.  And that's why everything can happen until the match is done.
We were 4‑up on the 15th tee and 2‑up and 17.  So, I mean, and especially on this golf course, where you need sometimes a little bit of luck or a good bounce or a good kick, everything can happen.

Q.  Are there more European fans out here than you anticipated?
KARINE ICHER:  Yes.  Yes.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  They are louder than I anticipated.  They're pretty good.  I mean, you guys are way many more than us, but they were pretty good out there.
KARINE ICHER:  Especially the juniors.  The juniors are really, really excited and very good, very loud, and it's bringing us some good energy.

Q.  For either one of you, with so many new faces on the team this year, there's not a lot of history in any of the pairings, it's not like they have played together.  Can you talk about how you feel like your captain's done in pairing everybody up.  Obviously you liked your pairing.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Obviously I have to say right now that she did really well.  But I don't like to say that the captains did well or bad according to the result, because that's how you play that day.  It could be the best pairing in the world and then you play bad and you lose.
So for us it worked out really well and I feel like Karine and I are really good to play with each other, because we get along really well and our games are super similar.  We hit it maybe the same.  Me maybe a little farther from the tee, but very similar.
And I think that, I don't know, I think that Lotta, we tried a few different things and I was actually surprised with some of the foursomes that we did, but they all make sense.  So I think she did a really good job.

Q.  Who decides whether you paint a flag on your face or not?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  It's a sticker.  We decided.  They don't make us do it.  I just like it.

Q.  Before going out did you sort of talk together for a few minutes and sort of have a game plan how you were going to reinforce each other or advise each other?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  Yeah.  We knew it was going to be really tough out there.  We were playing against Paula and Cristie and Americans love ‑‑ well everybody loves Paula and Cristie ‑‑ so we knew it was going to be really loud out there.  But the good thing about it, if you are up, then they can't be so loud.  So we just said, let's start playing our best and if we are up, then they won't be so loud and it will be better for us.
But we just said to just keep it to ourself.  I know it's going to be tough out there and obviously Americans are going to support the USA team, but we know that coming in here, so we just have to accept it and have fun with it.
KARINE ICHER:  And stick on our game plan.  We know it's different to play match play and foursome, but she knows what she has to do and I know what I have to do, sometimes on some putts we can talk a little bit and say okay.

Q.  Did you ever change each other's mind on something?
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  We read couple putts together.
KARINE ICHER:  A few putts.
AZAHARA MUNOZ:  But we're used to doing things separately and we have our caddies.  So we talked before this morning, if we were in doubt, then we would call each other, but then otherwise we would do it with our caddies.
And then on like on 14, she asked me, how far you want in or things like that.  But if it's just a shot, then she goes or I go.
KARINE ICHER:  We talk a little bit of strategy, but that's it.  In English.
(Laughter.)

 

Team USA, Jessica Korda & Morgan Pressel

THE MODERATOR:  Pleasure to welcome Morgan Pressel and Jessica Korda to the interview room.  Winners by a score of 3 & 2 over Catriona Matthew and Jodi Ewart Shadoff this morning.  If you both would just give us a few thoughts, generally, on your victory and the point you put on the board for the U.S. team.  We'll start with Morgan.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I think we played well out there today.  We were both a little shaky early, a little bit nervous this morning.  Beany and Jodi, we knew they were going to a tough match, and I know they probably didn't play as well as they would have liked, but we didn't make many mistakes.
And we were able to make some really good par saving putts, and as fast as these greens are, you end up having a lot of 5, 6‑footers for par.  And we both were able to make them and give ourselves a lot of opportunities at birdies as well.

THE MODERATOR:  Jessica, your first experience at the Solheim Cup.  How was it today?
JESSICA KORDA:  I said it kind of in a lot of interviews after the round, but I don't think I would want to share this more with any other person than with Morgan being out here on my first time.  I had such a blast out there.  And whenever something was going wrong she would be like, it's okay, we got this.
And then you always get a pep talk back and forth and I just had a lot of fun.  Being my first Solheim Cup, I had a great first match. 

Q.  For both of you, what is it like when you see some of the young girls out there with all their flair and colors and some of the younger golfers that are out there watching you guys this weekend?
JESSICA KORDA:  I feel like I'm still one of them.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Jessica is basically one of them.
JESSICA KORDA:  Most of them on the Junior Solheim Cup, I still know half of them out there, you know, even on the European side.  So I'm walking down the fairway I'm like, hey, I know you.  And it's just a lot of fun.
Being in Junior Solheim Cup in 2009 I always dreamt about being here and doing this.  And the fact that I'm here and doing it is really surreal.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  And I think it's really cool to see all the kids.  It's the future of the game out there.  Whether they're 3 years old out there and their parents dressed them in red, white, and blue, or they create their own outfits and they just come out and show their support and cheer really loudly.
That was me.  I was one of those kids who loved to go out ‑‑ I never was able to go see a Solheim Cup, but I was out watching golf tournaments and I loved it.  And they do as well.

Q.  What was the explanation given to you guys for why you were not out there this afternoon?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Rest.  Just rest.  I think that Meg said at the beginning of the week that she didn't want anyone to play five.  So just needed an afternoon to rest.

Q.  How did she tell you that?  You guys played so well this morning, I think most outsiders just assumed we would see you guys again this afternoon.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  We both, I think, knew before the day started that we were just playing this morning.  Things can always change, but we were ‑‑ we both anticipated resting this afternoon.  If she needed us to go, of course we would have jumped on it, but we knew this was our day to rest.

Q.  Two questions.  Curious, Morgan, on the 16th, what is your preference on the right side as opposed to the left side that have fairway?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  It's a tougher tee shot.  But I think it's a much easier approach.  And ‑‑ it's okay.
(Laughter.)
It's ‑‑
(Laughter.)
JESSICA KORDA:  Don't say that.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I'm sorry.
THE MODERATOR:  This is foursomes today.  Go ahead.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Just in general, when you come in from the left side, having to hit over that cross bunker, and it shoots forward instead of playing from the right side, it hits kind of into the mound, and I think it's a little bit easier to control the bounce from that side.  It still is a little bit of a crap shoot, but I think it's an easier shot shooting straight up that left little bank there.

Q.  Did you want to comment, Jessica, before I went on?
JESSICA KORDA:  No, it's just a really tough green.  Either way, you're trying to hit it as close as you can, but from either direction coming in with a wood, or even the long iron, it's really tough to stop it out there.  And you saw that Jodi and Catriona, they went down the left and even they went through the green.  So that's kind of the normal thing from over there.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Where Cristie hit her shot, that was pretty incredible.  I mean, to get it in there.

Q.  Was she right side?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  They were right side.  Yes.

Q.  Can you talk about the ruling on 16 and you went back and then you were talking to the official.  What went on in that conversation and how did it come to a conclusion?
JESSICA KORDA:  Well, what happened was I kind of pushed it ‑‑  like I pushed it off of my line, and we weren't sure if it caught the bush or not.  But I knew that it started and when it crossed that line, that it was going towards those bunkers and then fading off into the bush.  The girls, they weren't sure, because they were on the left side of the fairway, so they couldn't see the angle that I was at.
And so Morgan just walked back just in case she had to ‑‑ I think that's why you walked back ‑‑ just in case she had to hit it from there, so we didn't have to walk all the way back.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I kind of walked back to see the line that where we were, and because when you hit a shot, you're not necessarily looking, where did it cross the hazard.  So you kind of have to go back and look at it again.  And I knew that it was kind of going right at that second bunker, and if it had been enough ‑‑ if it had been more club it would have gotten into that second bunker, and that was inside the red stake.  So that was another reason why I was back there.

Q.  Did you get the yardage while you were back there?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I didn't get one.  Rock might have, I don't know.

Q.  Talk about the discussion about who would tee off this morning, how much of the rookie thing came into play.  How much was it about strengths on different holes?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  It was all about strengths on different holes.  It didn't really have anything to do with being a rookie or not.  The way that the, the way that it worked, she ended up teeing off on the first hole, but that, I think ‑‑ when there's as much of a discrepancy and as far as we hit it, I think that it's better, better for her to tee off on the odd holes and we both agreed and it definitely worked out well today.

Q.  What did you think about the first tee shot?
JESSICA KORDA:  I thought I was going to be way more nervous on the first tee, but I actually wasn't that bad.  The crowd up there was unbelievable this morning and being in the stands in 2009, I kind of knew what it was going to somewhat be like and then the girls were talking about it a lot this week, trying to get us prepared for it.
And I think that I was pretty prepared for it because I did kind of tug it a little bit, but that was more adrenaline than being nervous.

Q.  Jessica, did you discuss coming into the week any aspects of team play with your dad as far as Davis Cup, his experience, that sort of thing?
JESSICA KORDA:  Dad and I have talked more, kind of, these past two days that he's been here about how he felt and kind of what he did.  And I have a pretty good idea of how to handle myself, but he's played much bigger crowds than I can ever imagine in one room.
But we have talked about it a little bit and especially this morning, when I was feeling a little bit nervous, but my warm‑up went by really well, and my tempo was good and I wasn't speeding up like I usually do, so I really wasn't too worried.

Q.  What was it like for each of you to be part of the first tee scenario environment, but up in the stands in the afternoon?  Can you just talk about what that was like.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  We did it when we sat the morning match in Chicago on the second day, and we went out and being at home and being able to get the crowd riled up, it's a lot of fun.  It's exhausting.
And we were out there for an hour, and we felt like we worked really hard.  But it's fun.  There's nothing like it.  We don't have anything, any other experience like that in golf.
But of course you asked me about Lexi wanting the crowd to go crazy, she told us that before we got there, so we felt that it was our job to make sure that they were going crazy.  It's something that you can't even explain unless you're sitting there and experiencing it too.  You can't write about it, you can't talk about it, it's just an atmosphere that we don't have anywhere else.

Q.  Do you think the people were surprised when you just showed up and were like, oh, can I sit here?
JESSICA KORDA:  I think a little bit.  Yeah.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Yeah.
JESSICA KORDA:  A little bit.  But it's so electric up in the stands, it really is.  You can just feel the power from them and you kind of feed off of it.  You feed off of it all day, whether you're up in the stands trying to get them riled or whether you're down there trying to hit the tee shot.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I think that was one of the coolest things that happened today, was Jessica hit a really good shot on 8 and the crowd went crazy, and we just won the hole before, so we were looking at a chance to go 2‑up and she looked at me and she goes, I have chills.
And it's just, I mean, we all had chills.  There were moments like that out there on the golf course all day long.  And I'll never forget that.

Q.  What did you think of the speed of the greens?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Very quick.
JESSICA KORDA:  They're very fast.

Q.  Is it conducive for it?  Was the harder part the speed of the greens or the slopes on the greens?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I think the speed of the greens.  Because even if you have, even if you have an uphill putt here and green light, let's be aggressive, you're going to have a 5‑footer coming back for a par and now it's straight downhill.
The greens are tricky to begin with, but then when they're a 12 and you just ‑‑ I told some of the girls before they went out this afternoon, the greens are fast, you will have some lengthy par putts coming back if you get too aggressive.  It's inevitable.

Q.  Are they too fast?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I think they're good.  I think it's tough.  Nothing wrong with it being tough.

Q.  Following up on what you were saying how you were pumped up, the crowd's pumped up, would you like to see professional golf have more of this type of tournament for women?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I think that's what makes this event unique and special.  And I mean it's, people are cheering for a country.  I mean, when we play, when it's an individual sport it's a lot harder to do that.  But when people really get behind their country and behind their team, that's what leads to this kind of excitement and I think that if we had it every week it wouldn't make this week as special as it is.
JESSICA KORDA:  I don't think you would appreciate it as much as we do.  Being first time here, it's something really special that I've never experienced before and it makes you hungry to experience it again.

Q.  Morgan, were you concerned, I know you're a veteran at this, more so than Jessica anyway, were you, talk about being over psyched at least at the start.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  What do you mean by that?

Q.  Just being too fired up.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I don't know that we were necessarily too fired up, it's ‑‑ the first tee's a crazy atmosphere and it's kind of like, once you get past that, you're like, okay, this is what I do every day.  I know how to play golf.  And you kind of settle in a little bit.
But we were both a little shaky this morning.  I didn't sleep well last night.  I think that's normal.  I was nervous.  We were both a little bit nervous.  It's a really big deal and we both want to do really well.  We had a tough match and so I think I'll sleep better tonight because I'll be so tired.  But I hope so.
JESSICA KORDA:  We got pumped up certain holes.  Like I holed that putt on 14 and I got all riled up and ready to go and pumping the crowd up and then I realized I have to hit the next tee shot.  And I'm like, oh, I actually need to calm down now.  And it takes a lot.  You have to step back and realize, like, okay, I need to get back to reality and hit this next tee shot.  So you kind of get lost in the moment a little bit.  But I think that once you just reach the next tee, it's a whole new ball game.

Q.  Jessica, did you lose your breakfast on No. 1?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  It took a long time.
JESSICA KORDA:  No, I was wondering how long that was going to take.  Maybe a little bit.
(Laughter.)

Q.  Did that help?
JESSICA KORDA:  I actually.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I think it did, she hit a great shot into the green.
JESSICA KORDA:  For me, I was more nervous when Morgan was hitting her second shot than me actually having to hit the tee shot.  So I can't explain what happened, I just knew that the banana did not sit.
(Laughter.)
MORGAN PRESSEL:  And I told her after, as we were walking up the fairway, I looked at her and I said, some day when you are captain of this team you can tell your team this story of what happened to you on your first Solheim Cup.  You'll have a story for life.
JESSICA KORDA:  I'm now just making everybody else laugh on the team, so I'm getting a hard time for it.  It's okay.
MORGAN PRESSEL:  Hey, you won.  You got your first point.

Q.  What's the best thing that your dad told you this morning?  Is there something he said that was most helpful in getting through maybe just the first hole from the sounds of it.
JESSICA KORDA:  Just to remember to breathe and keep my tempo.  You don't realize that you stop breathing at some points out there.  You get so caught up in what's happening and you kind of forget to take that deep breath and just relax and take it all in.  But that was the most important thing.

Q.  A brief question to both of you, just about the joy of match play, the thrill of match play, as opposed to what you do for a living normally playing on the tour.  Jessica, to you first, what it means to you to be amongst this team and to be engaged in this gladiatorial format?
JESSICA KORDA:  Well, for me this means everything.  Coming into this year I wanted so bad to be on this team and I wanted so bad to do well and earn my spot on it.  And to finally be here, to already be Thursday or Friday afternoon, it's crazy for me.  Going through this whole experience and kind of being one of the younger girls on the team, representing the United States for me is the highest honor that I could ever have.  And my team's great.  I love my team.  I think we have a great chemistry and we have so much fun together.

MORGAN PRESSEL:  I'll touch on match play.  It's fun.  I love match play.  I don't think that's any secret.  And I love having a teammate.  Having Jessica out there, I mean there were times when I wanted to say, "I'm sorry" today and I held it in because that's just kind of part of the deal of having a partner.  We just battled back and had a lot of fun.
When you make a putt and you have your partner there to celebrate with you, it's a really cool feeling.  When she had that putt on the last hole, I knew she was going to make it.  And I just knew that it was going to go in.  And to be able to celebrate together, to celebrate with the crowd as well here playing at home and everybody really getting up for our victory, it was a lot of fun.

Q.  Do you feel like a gladiator out there?
MORGAN PRESSEL:  I felt like a golfer.  I don't know if I felt like a gladiator.  I don't know if I've ever felt like a gladiator.  But it's a fight.  It is a fight.  And that's the difference between match play is you are fighting somebody else instead of the golf course.  And it's just a long day.

 

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Topics: Notes and Interviews, Solheim Cup, 1st Round

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