Junior Golf Alliance of NY

Sep 032016

deutschebanklogo3KEELER’S KEEN EYE

Editor’s note: Capitalareagolf.com sent Stephen and Mary Ann Keeler to the second round of the FedEx Cup Playoffs at TPC Boston for the Deutsche Bank Championship this Labor Day Weekend. Here are some photos with more on the way. We hope you can get over to Norton, MA this weekend yourself to see some of what they did. Remember, it’s a Monday finish with coverage on NBC and Golf Channel.

Click here to read more from the practice round day, Thursday, September 1.

See Rickie Fowler’s pre-tournament press conference transcript below.

Rickie Fowler, who won this event last year, at his press conference at the 2016 Deutsche Bank Championship at TPC Boston on Thursday, September 1. Photo Stephen Keeler.

Rickie Fowler, who won this event last year, at his press conference at the 2016 Deutsche Bank Championship at TPC Boston on Thursday, September 1. Photo Stephen Keeler.

September 1, 2016

JOHN BUSH:  We would like to welcome our defending champion here at the Deutsche Bank, Rickie Fowler.  Rickie, if we can get your comments on being back here at TPC Boston.
RICKIE FOWLER:  Well, definitely excited to be back after winning last year and being defending champion.  Coming off of some better weeks since this summer hasn’t been what I’ve wanted it to be, so excited about the game coming around, and like I said, being somewhere where I have some good memories.
JOHN BUSH:  You enter the week at No. 16 in the FedExCup.  Just talk a little bit about your position and your thoughts over the next few weeks.
RICKIE FOWLER:  It would have been nice to finish up a little better last week to put myself in a better standing for not just the FedExCup but also with the Ryder Cup standings ending.  But like I said, excited about where the game’s going and trending in the right direction, so with that and being at a place where I’ve played well, it should be a good week.
Q.  Is that like an extra motivation for you knowing you’re still auditioning for the Ryder Cup?
RICKIE FOWLER:  I don’t think I need any extra motivation when the thought of Ryder Cup’s there.  That’s the No. 1 priority is to be there.  Yeah, it would have been nice to seal that deal last week, but very confident with where the game’s at and that we can, you know, put some good golf together and make sure that Davis gives us a pick.  But all I can do is take care of my business out here.
Q.  Rickie, there’s been a lot of guys in the Playoffs that have won twice in the Playoffs.  Obviously Horschel did it, Rory’s done it, a few other guys.  Why do you think that’s so?  Is it because the schedule is so compact if guys get a hot hand that they just keep rolling with it.
RICKIE FOWLER:  Yeah, you can definitely get hot and kind of roll through a couple weeks.  You saw, you said, Billy did it.  I think it was, what, obviously the last two and it’s not uncommon to see someone win and then if they’re playing the next week to at least have a chance or be continuing to play well.
I would like to say that if I get one, that second’s definitely a possibility but we’ve got to get that first one first.  It was close last week so I felt good about the game going into Barclays but I feel even better coming out of it.
Q.  How long did it take you to put Sunday behind you, and have you like analyzed what you think might have happened, particularly on the back nine?
RICKIE FOWLER:  I mean, it was quick and it wasn’t a worry.  There was just a couple swings where I got a little quick at the top and really 10, 15, 16, I heeled it on 10 and 15 causing the ball to start left.  I was trying to start the ball on the left side of the fairway and just have it bleed back to the center, which the wind was off the left.  And on 16 I hit it off the toe and typically it’s going to go a little left with the wind moving left as well.  So that was the main thing.
From there, playing out of the rough, you can’t do that when you’re trying to make up ground.  If anything, you’re just trying to hold position at that point.  It’s hard to make birdies out there playing from the rough.  Like I said, the greens get as firm and fast as crusty as they were.  And on top of that I just happened to make some little mistakes that if I drive it in the fairway I don’t do.  That was the biggest thing.  It’s nice that it wasn’t some bad swings where I was making bad mental errors.  Like I said, I just got a little quick from the top and caused miss hits.
Q.  Obviously successful here last year for you.  What are the biggest challenges this course presents?
RICKIE FOWLER:  I think, I mean just like really any course, the biggest thing is just driving the ball well.  A lot of guys tend to play well here.  It’s a very scoreable golf course from the fairway.  I need to drive the ball well.  Same thing as I needed to do last week, but if you drive the ball well it takes a lot of stress off the rest of the game and makes it a lot easier.  I know last year we were, I don’t know, what is it 16 under?  I don’t even remember my winning score, but guys have shot anywhere up to 24 under here.  I know Charley Hoffman did that.  Depending on the weather conditions, it’s supposed to be pretty mild, potential storms I know made Sunday or Monday but could be a scoreable week so going to have to drive it well to score well.
Q.  After the way you finished last week, how beneficial is it coming to a tournament where you’re defending champion?
RICKIE FOWLER:  I don’t think it would have mattered too much.  I mean, just the way I feel about my game and how I’ve been playing and continuing to get better and better as each week goes on, but if anything, it helps just because of the memories I’ve had here last year and coming off of playing well here the last time that we were here.  I can definitely feed off of that and then with the recent play as well.
Q.  Rickie, how long do you plan on keeping the Thomas Magnum dirt squirrel?
RICKIE FOWLER:  Well, it is a playoff duster, so at least through the Playoffs and hopefully that’s through TOUR Championship.
Q.  Rickie, what do you like about this course in particular, and talk more about what you just said about the memories you do have of coming for compete in Boston.
RICKIE FOWLER:  I always thought it was a fun golf course to play, they’ve got a great look to it, it’s got a lot of good variety from some holes that are longer, some shorter holes, some good par 3s, some good risk reward par 5s.  I hadn’t really put together a good tournament here until last year.  I had a couple good rounds but never four that put me in position to win.  That’s I guess in a way changed my confidence at this golf course and my look at playing here.  Before I think it was kind of finishing mid 20s, nothing special, and coming here now after the way I played last year, of course especially with how my game’s been, I know I can put myself in contention and have a chance to win this week.  But I’ve got to take care of my business and make sure I stay patient and disciplined and go through the same process I did last week, and if I do so there’s no reason why I won’t be in contention, but if I don’t take care of that, then I won’t be.  So I’ve got to make sure that I take care of my business, stay focused, but I definitely have a different outlook and like I talked about my confidence on this golf course after last year.
Q.  Rickie, on a lighter note, saw you at the Red Sox game the other night.  No uniform this year, nothing on the field?
RICKIE FOWLER:  No, I got there, I had a shoot in the morning or middle of the day so I wasn’t able to get to the field until about 5:30 or so I got to spend about an hour in the clubhouse.  I got to know some of the guys through some friends that played for the Cardinals that got traded over, Joe Kelly, Allen Craig.  Unfortunately, they’re not up right now so I went over and hung out with Clay and got to see some of the guys in the clubhouse, so it was a quick visit.  Wish I could have gotten there earlier to get some time out there either shagging balls or hanging with the boys on the field.