Will Grimmer: Round One Flash Interview
Q. To be at your age -- and forgive me, how old are you?
WILL GRIMMER: 17.
Q. 17. Just old enough to drive.
WILL GRIMMER: Yeah, I've only been driving since October.
Q. So you're just really into the swing of things. What is the significance of a U.S. Open to a 17 year old?
WILL GRIMMER: It's overwhelming. It's so cool. To think that I'm playing in a 156 player field with the greatest players in the world, there were over 10,000 applicants and only 156 players play. And 78 of the players were already fully exempt through World Rankings and other stuff. So it's awesome just to be here. I was very nervous about today, but it was awesome to go out there and to battle like that. It was really cool for me to really see -- it gave me a lot of confidence saying that I really can play with these guys, going out and shooting a 35 on that front nine and battling back, because it could have been so easy to cave there after 18, just making so many stupid mistakes on the front. It was just so cool -- it kind of proved to myself that I can really go out there and do it.
Q. What was it that you reached down for on that back nine that made you overcome that rough start?
WILL GRIMMER: I just tried to just slow it down a little bit and lighten my grip pressure on putts. I just felt like I was just getting a little bit too tense out there and not necessarily because I was frustrated at all, but just because I was nervous. There were definitely a lot of nerves running on that first opening nine. But that's what I was expecting. It's a U.S. Open, it's not your average junior golf tournament. One of the guys in my group said, you got to get here at some point, there's a first time for everything, so the sooner the better. It's true, hopefully, I will have a lot more of these in my future and I would love to get back here and play in these year in and year out as an adult. And to get here at 17 and know what it's like, it's a great experience and it's something that will prepare me for the rest of the year and going forward.
Q. What strengths, what plays to your strengths here and what gives you trouble here, after several days of practice and your first round under your belt?
WILL GRIMMER: I would say the fact that these fairways are pretty firm and narrow. It places a premium on hitting the fairway, because of all that junk and stuff. I've heard Bubba and some of those guys talk about how they're laying back this week and I don't hit it that far, but still hitting it 280 and taking driver on every hole, I only missed a couple fairways out there. The mistakes for me were putting and I think I got a lot of that corrected by the back nine. I started making some really good putts. I just missed a ton of those five, six, seven footers, had some bad speed on the front and a couple three putts that were just brain farts. I think a lot of that was just nerves. The one thing that's giving me trouble is chipping. The grain around these greens is so severe and just you hit one shot that comes in too low and too far and it goes over the green on the other side; but you catch it a hair bit heavy and it hits into the hill and comes right back to your feet. It's such a precise golf course. And I've heard -- it's not just me saying that, I heard that from so many guys, just in the locker room, saying, compared to most U.S. Opens, it seems to really put an emphasis on the short game, but hopefully the putting -- and I think the putting will be there tomorrow, be a little more comfortable tomorrow, having today under my belt, but I got to go work on the wedges probably this afternoon.
Q. Do you think you can build the back nine, build on the back nine momentum?
WILL GRIMMER: Oh, without a doubt.
Q. And maybe put a number up tomorrow?
WILL GRIMMER: That was a confidence booster. Prior to that I had no experience in the U.S. Open and there's nothing there to give me confidence to say I can go out and do it. And going out and having five birdies today and, yes, there were a few doubles and some bogeys, but I'm looking at the five birdies, going, okay, I had five birdies in my first ever round in a U.S. Open. If I can go do that, let's go build on that tomorrow and just try to eliminate the mistakes I made, like the two doubles and just some of the brain farts, putting the ball in the wrong sides of the greens. But, no, I'm feeling excited and ready to go tomorrow.
Q. Is it cool to be 17 and at a U.S. Open?
WILL GRIMMER: It's awesome. It doesn't get any better than this. Just spending a week here, just going in the locker room and all this stuff, it's great. But, yeah, just everything, the whole nine yards, it's just a once in a lifetime experience and hopefully I'm be able to do it more than once in a lifetime.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports