Media Center Interviews
April 20, 2017
Round 1 Quick Quotes With Will MacKenzie
Q. It's not how you start, it's how you finish. You bogied the 1st and rip off 6 birdies. Well done. Tell me about the round.
WILL MACKENZIE: That was a tough start but then I started hitting some good iron shots in there and made some clutch putts. The 2nd hole I hit a sprinkler head in the middle of the fairway, goes into the lip of the bunker and make like pretty miraculous birdie there and we were laughing about it.
Then on the third hole, I guess the 12th but it's our third hole, I hit it pretty far right. Hits a rock or hits something, bounces way out. So I kept using that same ball from the sprinkler head, made another birdie. I was like we're going the use this ball all day, all nicked up, the gnarliest ball ever. You know, just it loosened the round up. I actually hit pretty good golf shots. I had great touch on the greens.
Q. Did you really use the ball the whole round?
WILL MACKENZIE: I made a par on -- I think I parred every par 5 out there and after one of those I was kind of angry so I put it to rest.
Q. As you know, these are difficult sets of par-5s. How did the golf course as a whole play?
WILL MACKENZIE: It's playing great. The greens were soft enough where you could get it today. But still hard to get close to the hole, still hard to gauge everything. Just enough wind, but it played pretty benign out there.
It was getable as I've seen it. But, yeah, the par-5s are tricky for me. I'm not long enough to hit them in two. You got to have good wedge game. I gave one up on No. 8, had like 6 feet and missed it. That was kind of a bummer. All in all, I played great.
Q. I know it's been a little bit of an inconsistent start to the season for you. How has your patience been?
WILL MACKENZIE: Not -- as usual, not very good. But, you know, I've been off for three weeks. I can't get into tournaments so I've been chilling, you know, fishing, practicing a little bit.
Fired up to come out here for three weeks in a row knowing that I'm going to play and work on my game and hopefully shoot some more pretty good scores.
Q. You put together an opening round 67. Given the relative calm temperatures and the lack of wind here in Texas, how are you able to capitalize?
WILL MACKENZIE: Just that. The greens are soft enough, they got rain I think Monday before we came or Tuesday and Monday. It softens the golf course a little bit. You get mud balls in the fairway which is kind of tough but the greens are just soft enough where you can hit some -- your scoring clubs you can one bounce and stop. So, I did that.
The greens rolled beautifully as they always have here. This golf course has gotten better and better over the years. It's softened up. A little kinder to us. It used to be rugged and tough. When the wind comes up you know how it plays, really tough.
So, like you said, it was pretty benign conditions and I took advantage of it.
Q. You finished tied for 2nd here a couple years ago. You mentioned the course getting better as it goes along. What about this course suits you?
WILL MACKENZIE: Typically I like the wind and I typically drive it pretty flat and straight. That was my deal. I could control my irons pretty well in the wind. I always thought I was a pretty good wind player. So, I've shot some good scores here but it's beaten me up as well. So, I don't trust it but I like it.
Every time I come here I'm excited. I know I have a chance to play well here. Whether I will or not, this is a good start and now I'm just ready to keep on plugging.
Q. Speaking of a good start, when you're playing partners are also dropping putts, how much of a factor does that have with the way that you play?
WILL MACKENZIE: I think it's huge. I like to chat out there and shoot the breeze and talk to my boys. When I get -- Anirban is a total ace. I've known him a couple years. Freddie Jacobson is one of my oldest friends out here. It's just hilarious.
I had a blast out there with those guys. They're just playing well. So, it was great.