Sony Open in Hawaii

Friday, January 13, 2023

Honolulu, Hawaii, USA

Waialae Country Club

Taylor Montgomery

Quick Quotes

Q. Taylor, good playing?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Thank you very much.

Q. I was just overhearing, you said you didn't hit your irons that well but your short game was absolutely on pointe.

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, my bunker play, I like the sand out here I guess. It was really good. Even I had a few that the lies weren't that great and still managed to hit them close and get them up and down.

Q. Had you seen this course before this week or no?


Q. So I would say you're doing all right. And your caddie is a veteran though, he's been out here?


Q. So he's helping you?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah. I mean, comes down to like seeing it. Like we been putting in a lot of work on practice rounds and stuff like that.

Q. When did you start looking at this place?


Q. Monday. When you first saw it did you think, this looks like could suit my game, or does pretty much any golf course suit your game right now?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, it suits my game. You got to drive it really well here and it's short. Normally I'm a pretty good wedge player. It's like the longer irons that I've been struggling with.

But it's up and down. One day I could hit them really good and then the next is not so great; whereas I feel like my chipping and putting and driving has been very consistent.

Q. You feel like you're ready to win out here?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, I definitely feel like I could win at any time. I hope to do that soon.

Q. To what do you attribute your strong play in the fall?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Definitely short game and driving, driving on the courses where I can hit driver a lot, the ones that don't have too much OB right and left; whereas like course like here I'm hitting a lot of 3-woods.

I feel like I hit driver really well at like a longer, bigger course like Torrey Pines or something like that.

Q. But this is your rookie year, right?


Q. Not knowing what to expect, to play well and get your card and then to carry it on kind of at a higher level of experience I like to call it, not so much competition, what do you think allowed you to get off to such a great start in general?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Just the hard work that I've put in. I think last year after like the fifth Korn Ferry event, kind of worked on a few things with like my routine and stuff like that.

I've just kind of stuck to it. Looking back I've played amazing golf even though some days it doesn't feel like that. I feel like I'm a really good scorer of the ball.

Q. Scorer?


Q. (Regarding the first five Korn Ferry Tour events.)

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: The first event I think I shot 84 and then...

Q. (Indiscernible.)

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: (Laughter.) And then I came back actually. I got an exemption into the Farmer's and finished tied for 11th, so just very -- but it was just very inconsistent, like everything.

And then I shot like 62 in Columbia, and then the next round shot like 77 or something. Like it was just all over the place.

Q. So you're saying we should go back and look at your record. Wasn't that right before you got fitted for your first set of clubs?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: That was after the first event in the Bahamas.

Q. You got fitted for the first time?


Q. You never got fitted...

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Not really, not for irons. Always woods. I kind of always used an X100 shaft. Just went with it.

Q. Can you go over -- you had a meeting with Tiger, a chance meeting at Diamante.

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, Ken Jowdy down at Diamante is a really great guy. He's buddies with Tiger Woods, and Tiger is developing a golf course down there. I got to meet Tiger Woods for the first time and he was a really cool dude.

I mean, his foot didn't look too good walking, but we were talking about his kid and kind of like the tour and the way the way guys play. It is really cool to talk to the best player ever, in my opinion.

Q. How much did he know about you?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Probably not that much. Ken was trying to get me into the Genesis was his main concern, and Tiger thought that I would make it into that event.


Q. Play your way in?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, so who knows.

Q. He told you hard work trumps all?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, pretty much. There is a video of it, it was really cool.

Q. At Diamante?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, from Diamante. Just really cool to see what he had to say.

Q. In terms it of the way you played yesterday and the way you scored today, which round did you find more enjoyable?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: I would say yesterday's round just because, I mean, I felt like I hit my irons really good. Then I looked at the strokes gained approach and I was like dead even.

I'm like, how good are these damn guys with their irons? Like I don't know. Just an area that I really want to improve. I feel like I can get really good if I start hitting my irons like really good.

Q. So you thought in your mind that you struck it pretty well and saw the numbers and saw you're pretty low in the pack?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, like I think I was 80th and I felt like I hit my irons awesome.

Q. Been a good lesson, maybe not hitting as good as you think.

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, exactly. So that's kind of where -- I mean, I've been working hard on it. Just got to work even harder.

Q. When Fred Couples shot 60 at Shadow were you there watching him?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: I was playing with my dad and a couple other guys. They were playing like a little match. My dad said he saw some of the coolest shots he's ever seen that day.

Q. You weren't there?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: I was out there. I was practicing but I was super young. Like this was when Freddy was in his prime.

Q. But you just shot 60?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Well, I shot 60; they changed the golf course. They made it a lot longer. It's is completely different golf course than when Tiger and Fred Couples played it.

Q. You didn't text Freddy and say, I tied you?


Q. Where did you do most of your golf growing up?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Kind of near my house is a golf course called Black Mountain and then Boulder Creek was a short drive as well.

And then once I committed to UNLV I started going out to Shadow Creek and practicing out there.

Q. What's your dad's history?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: He used to be really good player. I mean, he still is. I just like to needle him a little bit.

Q. What does "really good" mean?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: He played a couple tour events. I want to say maybe 19th, 20th or something in the Buick Open. But always a really good ball-striker. Just an absolutely terrible putter, which is amazing, because I'm like the complete opposite. (Laughter.)

Q. Skips a generation.


Q. How did he get into the Buick Open?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: He might have Mondayed. I'm actually not sure. He probably Mondayed in.

Q. What was the best thing about growing up in Vegas?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Probably playing golf out there and just seeing the celebrities, like Tiger, Michael Jordan, Jerome Bettis. All the athletes out there loved golf. I was never into golf. I was more into like basketball and football and stuff.

Once I start seeing those guys out there, it kind of drew me towards the game a lot more.

Q. Jordan played Shadow?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Oh, yeah. He was out there all the time.

Q. Your dad got know him a little bit?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Oh, yeah. Yeah. MJ is such a cool dude, especially when you get him around all the guys. He loves to hang out and talk.

Q. (Indiscernible.)


Q. What did he call you?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: I don't know if I can say that. (Laughter.)

Q. He doesn't call you Monty?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: No. He called me Taylor, but there is a story. I used to caddie for the guy that he was playing against and I was always trash talking to him. This was at the age I grew like a foot in a year. He is like, hey, Bobby, who the hell is that kid? He's like, oh, you dumb ass that's Monty's kid.

Because I was just yapping the whole time. My guy kept chipping in and making putts and hitting it close and he was beating MJ pretty bad.

Didn't work out though. The back nine MJ kind of did MJ stuff. (Laughter.)

Q. You don't strike me as a trash talker. Pretty good at it?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Normally at home, yeah. Yeah, with all the guys. I mean, I wish we had a tournament out here where we could just start yapping at some guys.

Q. Who do you play with at home?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Just a lot of caddies out at shadow and just some friends. Kurt Kitayama quite a bit.

Q. I want to hear some of this.


Q. Not going to get it out here, though?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: No. It gets bad. It gets very personal. Colt Knost is one of the worst. No, like, he's a pain to talk to because he's really good at trash talk. It would never be appropriate for TV. He's really good at it.

Q. What is the timeline, Colorado, Vegas? Been in Vegas your whole life?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: I have. My parents were born in Grand Junction, Colorado.

Q. You have no skiing, no snowboarding?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: No. I tried skiing twice. Good at water skiing, but snow skiing, not that great.

Q. That also skipped a generation.

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, exactly. (Laughter.)

Q. Are you sure that they're your parents? Have you taken a DNA test?

TAYLOR MONTGOMERY: Yeah, who knows.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
128363-1-1041 2023-01-14 00:03:00 GMT

ASAP sports

tech 129