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Lorena Ochoa Continues to Win
The victories continue to pile up for Lorena Ochoa, the LPGA Tour's emerging star. The Mexican native won the Canadian Women's Open for her second straight win and fifth of the season. She closed with a 2-under 69 for a three-stroke victory over American Paula Creamer.
Ochoa was in control all the way. Following up her victory in the Women's British Open two weeks ago, Ochoa had a 16-under 268 at the Royal Mayfair course in Edmonton, Alberta, and earned $337,500. Creamer carded a 68.
After the win, the unquestioned No. 1-ranked female golfer in the world sat down with the media and discussed her latest win and her outstanding season.
Lorena Ochoa Interview
MODERATOR: Congratulations. This is your fifth win of the season, 14th of your career. You just won back-to-back championships between the Women's British Open and now the CN Canadian Women's Open. The only person to win last year back-to-back tournaments was you in October when you won in Mexico and then again at Samsung. To go back-to-back and win this championship and to be embraced by the fans of Edmonton and Canada, how does that feel?
LORENA OCHOA: Thank you. It feels very good. I'm very happy. It was just a great day today. It wasn't easy. I didn't feel very comfortable in the morning. I wasn't in a rhythm on the front nine, and Paula made a couple birdies to narrow the difference. And then we made the turn, and then I started feeling strong. I made a good birdie on No. 12 to get good momentum, and I think from there things kind of changed in my way to finish with a good distance.
MODERATOR: Can we go over your scorecard quick before we ask questions? No. 3?
LORENA OCHOA: No. 3, par 5, I hit the green with a wedge, 115 yards, about six, seven feet, and I made it. 6, I hit an 8-iron just three, four feet and made it. 9, bogey, I hit the bunker short of the green with a 9-iron and hit it out about four or five feet and I missed that for par. And then No. 12, I hit a 7-iron 145 yards to three, four feet, and I made that. 15, I hit a wedge 110 yards, a little bit long, maybe ten feet, and I made that. Bogey on 17, I went over the green with a 7-iron and then couldn't get up-and-down. That was about seven feet long, the putt, and then I missed my putt. I didn't hit any day the green on 17. I don't know what happened (laughing).
Q. Did you fly it yesterday, too?
LORENA OCHOA: Uh-huh. I went over the green two times.
Q. Do you get the sense that the fans were cheering for you out there, and if so, do you think there's going to be a point where they're cheering for somebody else to win?
LORENA OCHOA: Today I thought they were cheering for Paula. She made a couple birdies and they seemed very excited. I think either way they wanted to see good golf. But at the same time I also felt they were for me. I think people were just trying to say, good job, you can do it, you are fine, keep your mind in it. A lot of positive words and a lot of Mexican flags out there, some Mexicans came, and my friends that I have here. So I think it was just an amazing day either way. The crowds were amazing. Me and Paula talked about it, and we were like, this is for sure a major tournament. It's just amazing. The first hole was surrounded by people, and you don't see that very often. It was a very special week.
Q. Congratulations on the week.
LORENA OCHOA: Thank you.
Q. Is there room for a fifth major on the women's Tour?
LORENA OCHOA: I don't think I can answer that because it's not my job. But we'll see what happens. I just know that this tournament we play as a major, everything, sponsors, the clubhouse, the golf course and the people, the media coverage, everything has been like a major for sure.
Q. Can you talk about what was going through your mind when Paula closed the gap to two with seven holes to play?
LORENA OCHOA: I thought, just be relaxed and you'll be fine. And at the same time I was trying not to get into her game, just concentrate on my game, just making sure you make a couple birdies and you'll be fine. So I'm pretty happy. I think I managed the pressure good, and I was in control of myself. Even though I didn't hit the ball good on the front nine, I think it shows on the back nine that I was in control and I was hitting good shots, and I'm really pleased about -- everything has been a process, and I think I'm learning every day more, and I like that.
Q. You had about a five-minute stop right there on 18. What was it like to take in that view, when you had five minutes just to think about it?
LORENA OCHOA: After the second shot? It's always good when you're a little bit ahead. At that point I was just talking to Dave, my caddie, great week, great golf course and how challenging it was and how good we're playing. We talked about some of the good shots we hit today. On the par 3, on the 16th, that was a really nice tee shot. Just you never really know -- just we talk because it's bad to just have time to think (laughing), so we just kind of were looking around and kind of smiled.
Q. The last two days have been kind of really iffy for weather. Did that affect your game at all?
LORENA OCHOA: No. I was very pleased today that it didn't rain. It would have been a little bit different, just more of a challenge, harder to play good, to shoot a low score. I think we had a beautiful day today, it was very calm, no wind, not too cold, just a great day to enjoy the walking. I'm very thankful for today.
Q. Two questions. First of all, you never looked, from where we were standing, like you ever had any fear that Paula was going to catch you, even when she was within two. You were very confident. Inside your head did you ever think maybe it was slipping away?
LORENA OCHOA: No, not at the golf course or not the way we were playing. It was not that I was afraid of, but I knew she could do it. I knew she was a player that could come from behind because she had a hot start and made a few birdies at the beginning. I knew she was capable of it, so I was just -- I was going to try to be careful not to think too much on her game, just try to do my own way, and like I said, I think I controlled very good what was happening out there, and I'm happy for that.
Q. The area around 6, 7, 8 there was some event down on the river with lots of drums. Have you ever played in a final round through that kind of noise, and what was that like?
LORENA OCHOA: (Laughing) well, it's an important event for them. I saw on the news yesterday the canoes, and it looks fun (laughter). Hopefully they have enough people because we have a lot of big crowds here (laughing). But it was good. It didn't bother me.
Q. Were you ever worried when Paula got within two shots?
LORENA OCHOA: I don't think that's the right way to make the question. Like I said before, it's not I was worried, I just knew she could do it. That's why I was trying to be very conscious about it and just making sure I concentrate on my game and making sure I play good in the tournament. That's why eventually when she made one or two birdies, she's a great player and I know she wanted to win really bad. But I'm very happy the way I handled myself and the way I turned around and made that birdie on No. 12 and then birdie on 15. So it was like I thought it would be, not easy, but I did it.
Q. What kind of a statement does winning the last two tournaments back-to-back make for you? And as a second question, you made some reference to the challenge of the golf course. There were a lot of people under par and some really high scores. Did not the golf course lose?
LORENA OCHOA: Well, when you win a golf tournament, the next week it's really tough because a lot of things happen, a lot of interviews, you are tired physically and mentally, and those are one of the things -- this is my fifth season, that I've been learning through the years. And I think at this point I'm ready to instead of struggle the week after, just be able to carry that good momentum and keep it going. I always play to win, and I knew that this would be a great week. We've always said that this is a huge week. It's a big event for us. So we just tried really hard, we concentrated a lot, and we wanted to win the tournament. And your second question was?
Q. How challenging the golf course was.
LORENA OCHOA: I was very surprised, this course was very long. You know, I said in the press conference that every day a couple under would be enough, and it didn't happen. I really don't know. I don't know what happened (laughing). Sometimes you just have a lot of players that play really, really good. Other weeks you play just okay and you win because a lot of players are stalled. But it's very different week to week, but for sure it was a great level of golf amongst all the players, and I think that's great for the tournament and for all of you.
MODERATOR: Thank you all very much. Once again, congratulations on your win.
The transcript for the above interview is courtesy of ASAP Sports.