U.S. Senior Open Championship

Friday, June 24, 2022

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

Saucon Valley C.C. (Old Course)

Gene Sauers

Quick Quotes

THE MODERATOR: Gene Sauers, 4-under 67. Gene, what was working so well out there today?

GENE SAUERS: I hit the ball really well. Like I say, major tournaments you got to hit fairways and greens. I did that today. I don't think I really -- might have missed one fairway, and I had a lot of chances on my back nine, which was will front this evening, and I couldn't capitalize on anything.

Made a bogey on 2. Hit a good 4-iron right at the hole and just came a little short in the bunker. Made bogey there.

From 3, 4, 5, 6, I had birdie chances the whole way in, and then I made a bomb on No. 7. Right up the hill, down the hill, side hill; made that one.

And then on 8 hit a 9-iron in there three feet and made it. Made a good up and down here on 9.

So I'm playing solid, putting ball good. I have always said if I can get -- if my putter works I'm going to be in contention every week.

Q. What have you learned about the course so far after 36 holes in championship conditions?

GENE SAUERS: Like I said, you got to hit the fairways and give yourself opportunities to hit the right parts of the greens. The back nine is a little bit tougher than the front nine is. That green is undulating and the speed and stuff, so you really got to watch where you place the ball on the greens.

Q. In the Top 5 right now we have a rookie and Padraig, Jay Haas, who is 68 years old. Talk about the state of senior men's golf.

GENE SAUERS: I played with Jay a weeks ago in Des Moines. He shot 64 I think and could have been lower than that. And being 68 years old, I hope I'm that good when I'm 68.

Padraig Harrington, I've played a few rounds with him and, man, he can move the ball. He's got like four gears. I might have a half a gear and he's got like four gears.

He's a great guy, great competitor, been out here a long -- well, not on the Champions Tour a long time, but professional for a long time. It's going to be an interesting weekend.

Steve Stricker is right there. Who else is up there?

Q. Steve Alker.

GENE SAUERS: What did he shoot yesterday?

Q. 72 yesterday, 67 today.

GENE SAUERS: Yeah, see, you can never count him out. He's dominating our tour out there this year, so it's going to be a fun weekend.

Q. What about this championship brings out the best in you? You won it in '16; playoff in '14. Why do you love it so much?

GENE SAUERS: I think I concentrate a little better. My focus is more narrower than just another old tournament, just go out there and wail it.

I hit a lot of fairways and greens so that's what keeps me in it.

Q. Was your start today where you made three birdies in your early holes, did you gain confidence from that?

GENE SAUERS: I did. I was, I said, man, I'm doing pretty good right here. And on 8 I hit a decent shot. Kind of in between clubs a lot today and I've been having a little trouble with my 8-iron.

I got a brand new set of clubs and it's the second week for them, Srixons. I wasn't exactly 100% positive with my 8-iron. There was a of couple shots I should have hit my 8-iron. Took a little off the 7 or whatever. Anyway, no, it's great. I made a great up and down on No. 18.

I don't know if you saw that or not. Hit it up against the lip and had a shot like this and made a hell of a par.

But the back nine, hit the ball great. Had a lot of opportunities but just didn't capitalize except for the last few holes, so put myself right back into it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
122104-1-1041 2022-06-24 23:15:00 GMT

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