Semifinal Interview With Kraft August 26, 2011

            THE MODERATOR:  All right, everyone, we're going to get started.  We're here with Kelly Kraft, who is our second finalist for this year's U.S. Amateur Championship.  First off, Kelly, congratulations.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Thank you. 

            THE MODERATOR:  Tell us about the match.  You got down early but fought back.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Yeah.  I hit a good drive on 1, and I just hit a horrible second shot, and I lost ‑‑ I hit it in the hazard left, lost the hole, but I wasn't worried or anything.  It was the first hole.  

            Came back good.  I just putted really well today. 

            THE MODERATOR:  What's it like to get on that kind of roll where you're feeling very confident in your game?  

            KELLY KRAFT:  It's good.  You know, when you get on a roll putting kind of like I did today, it just feels like you're going to make every 15, 20‑footer that you look at.  So it's pretty easy then.  

            THE MODERATOR:  We'll open it up for questions. 


            Q.  Can you talk about your two‑putt on 13, especially the one that you made come back?  Was that about six, eight feet would you say? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  Was that the par‑3?  


            Q.  Par‑3, yeah.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  That was probably eight feet.  Just hit the first one too hard.  I mean it's just hard to judge coming down that hill.  But that was definitely a key putt to make.  I thought that was ‑‑ gave me good momentum going into that par 5. 


            Q.  Yeah, because you were coming off losing 12.  You had to ‑‑ just talk about the shot.  Did the wind grab it left or was that ‑‑ 

            KELLY KRAFT:  On 12?  


            Q.  On 13.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  On 13?  I just kind of ‑‑ I hit a draw, and I think I just hit it up into the wind and it just kind of kept drifting to the left.  It was good distance, just left.  We were just trying to hit it in the middle of the green there.  So I mean I can't hit at that flag. 


            Q.  Kelly, you said you've gotten on a roll, confidence when you make a few 15, 20‑footers.  Any idea how many 15, 20‑footers you've made over the last couple days? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  No.  Probably quite a few.  I feel like I've made a lot.  And I feel like I haven't missed any short putts.  I have no idea, though. 


            Q.  Is this the best you've ever putted, do you think? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  Probably pretty close, yeah.  


            Q.  Can you tell me a little bit about your background, I mean how you got into golf, that whole thing? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  Yeah, I got into golf ‑‑ nobody in my family plays golf.  Went out with some buddies and their dads whenever I was younger, like seventh grade.  Went to the country club, whatever, and played a couple rounds of golf with them and just really got hooked and kept going back.  Stopped playing ‑‑ I played baseball, stopped playing baseball to play golf and all that stuff.  So I just really started focusing on golf pretty heavily whenever I got to high school.  


            Q.  Did you win any state ‑‑ I mean in high school did you do anything golf wise? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  No.  Actually ‑‑ no, I didn't ‑‑ never made it to the state championship in high school.  Never made it out of regionals.  Our team struggled a little bit in high school, but yeah.  


            Q.  Kelly, when you won your match a couple days ago now, the 23‑hole match, when you survive something like that, how much did it do for your confidence in all the matches you've played since then?  I'm sure you've gotta feel if you can win something like that, you can almost win them all at that point.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Yeah.  Definitely ‑‑ you know, you assure yourself that you've got a lot of fight in you.  If you can hang on for 23 holes and not back down, you know, you just have that in the back of your mind and you know you can do it again if you have to. 


            Q.  Have you ever ‑‑ forgive me if this was asked, but have you ever played with Patrick before? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  Never played with him, no.  Played in a couple same tournaments, amateur tournaments, but never played with him, no. 


            Q.  You've had a pretty successful summer winning the Trans‑Miss and the Texas Am.  What would a victory tomorrow mean to you? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  It would be something else.  That would be ‑‑ I don't even know how to explain that right now.  But that would be pretty special.  


            Q.  Kelly, what did you think of Jack's game?  

            KELLY KRAFT:  I thought he was good.  Hits the ball hard, putts well.  I thought he was a solid player.  Usually you get a bigger guy like that and he doesn't have that good of touch or whatever, but he was pretty good around the greens, and he's going to ‑‑ he's a solid player.  


            Q.  Kelly, obviously it's been a lot of tournaments, a lot of practice to get to this point.  Just an overall reaction on making it to the championship match tomorrow.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Thrilled.  Hadn't really sunken in yet, I don't think.  But I mean I still have one more round to go tomorrow, so I don't want to get too high before then, you know.  Kind of want to keep it at an even keel until then and then I can hopefully do some celebrating after tomorrow.  But I gotta stay focused on tomorrow and not get too ahead of myself. 


            Q.  In terms of your background, are you done at SMU now, and if so, what are your plans? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  I'm done with any eligibility, so I can't play golf, but I have another year of school left before I graduate.  

            THE MODERATOR:  So you are going to finish your degree. 

            KELLY KRAFT:  That's the plan, yeah.  As of right now, yeah.  

            THE MODERATOR:  And what's your major?  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Sociology.  Golf.  (Laughs). 


            Q.  Your opponent tomorrow has had quite a summer.  How do you feel about going up against someone with those kind of credentials?  Or doesn't it matter who you play? 

            KELLY KRAFT:  I mean it's great and all, but we're both playing the same golf course tomorrow, and we've both made it this far, so we're both playing pretty good.  

            I like my chances out there tomorrow.  

            THE MODERATOR:  Any other questions?  No?  Well, Kelly, thanks so much for coming.  Congratulations.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Thank you. 

            THE MODERATOR:  And we'll see you back here tomorrow morning for the final.  

            KELLY KRAFT:  Sounds good.  


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