MARU MARTINEZ

RHONDA GLENN: Maru Martinez, 2‑up, I understand you hit the ball long and straight.

MARU MARTINEZ: I hit it pretty straight today.

Q.   Overall, was there a point in the match where you felt like I think this is going to go my way?

MARU MARTINEZ: Well, you never should feel that way.  I think even though if you are winning, you have to keep working and working until it ends because you never know what is going to happen.  We were playing against very good players.  I mean, we're all good here and it's really hard to say who is going to win and who is better than who.  I think I have been very lucky these days and I hope I can play well tomorrow again.

RHONDA GLENN:  Did you know who Virada was before you ‑‑

MARU MARTINEZ: Yes, I did.  I have been following all the college players because that's where I want to be.  So I really  ‑‑ I saw her  ‑‑ well, I have seen her in a couple of tournaments.  She's done pretty well.  I know she's a pretty good player.

RHONDA GLENN:  NCAA Champion.

MARU MARTINEZ: Yes.

Q.   10 or 11 at that point did you feel like momentum was sort of going her way?  Did you get out of your routine at all at that point?

MARU MARTINEZ: Well, I just said, well, we're all square and it starts again.  She has to win more holes to beat me so I just said, well, just keep working and keep doing, getting the fairways in regulations then going to the green and then see if I could make the putts.

Q.   How much was nerves a factor and how did you overcome that?

MARU MARTINEZ: Well, I haven't been really nervous.  I just  ‑‑ I tried to focus a lot on the game, just putting the ball in the fairway and then on the green and then seeing ‑‑ it's a very  ‑‑ it's an honor for me to be here, and I just want to do my best and I don't want to think about being nervous.  Of course you get a little bit, but I can control it, yes.

Q.   On 18 for instance when you were on the tee you backed off, talk to your dad.  Is that just finding a line of focusing not sort of taking a breath?

MARU MARTINEZ: Yes, I wasn't focused and I wasn't going to hit the ball like that.  I just wanted to make my routine again and feel very comfortable and then hit it, yes.  I didn't want to make the mistakes, so  ‑‑ that's it.

RHONDA GLENN: Has your dad caddied for you prior to this tournament?

MARU MARTINEZ: Just a couple of times.

RHONDA GLENN:  In tournaments?

MARU MARTINEZ: Yes, some in Venezuela but he doesn't like to be  ‑‑ it's not that he doesn't like   ‑‑ it is just that, he enjoys watching me play.  I always get my own caddie but he wanted to do it now.  It's been really good.  We're a great team.  We're having fun, and, yeah.

Q.   To someone that's never seen the two of you together before this week, it looks like he wants to be close, talk to you but sometimes he gets a little too nervous, a little to like he doesn't want to be there, do you get that impression?

MARU MARTINEZ:  Well, it is just that I am the player and sometimes he has to let me do things.  He just  ‑‑ I mean, I am the one who decides which club I am going to hit. He just helps me and says calm down and just  ‑‑ I don't know, he give me a lot of confidence.  He trusts me so much that I can feel it, so I feel pretty well.  I think that he feels great about me too.

Q.   The tournaments that he's caddying for you, the other tournaments, what sort of events have they been?

MARU MARTINEZ: Well just tournaments in Venezuela, probably regionals.  Not a big tournament like this one.

RHONDA GLENN:  You are going to be playing Brandi Jackson tomorrow.  She just won.  Had you ever heard of her before you came here?  Have you met her yet?

MARU MARTINEZ: No, I don't know who she is.  But tomorrow is another day and I will do my best tomorrow, see what happens.  Hopefully everything will be okay, but if not, well, there are a lot more tournaments and I have got to keep working hard and that's the way it is.  Sometimes you lose and sometimes you win, yeah.

Q.   You have come down to 18 on every match but one, I believe, is that correct?

MARU MARTINEZ: Yes.

Q.   Do you think that will help you tomorrow if it does get close down the stretch look I have been here plenty of times, I have been to 18 three times before, do you that  will help if it comes down to it?

MARU MARTINEZ: I don't know.

Q.   You hope it doesn't get that close?

MARU MARTINEZ: I love 18.  (Laughs) I parred it  ‑‑ each time, so I don't know, I feel good about getting to 18.  It's okay for me.  I don't care.

Q.   Do you ever have instances when you are playing with someone and because of your size, first ball off the tee seeing how far you hit it, and they are sort of shocked how far you hit the ball?

MARU MARTINEZ: Well, I don't know.  I just try to play to my own game.  There are a lot of people that hit the ball longer than me and it doesn't matter.  I think it's the one who can make less shots and play better.  It's not hitting the ball long.  I think I have to work on it.  I have been working a lot with my swing and I am trying to get more distance, but I think it's going to come with my work, with my everyday work, start  ‑‑ I have got to start working out and I am going to start doing that when I get to college next week and just working on my swing.  I feel good about my game.

Q.   This is a pretty good way to introduce yourself to your college teammates.

MARU MARTINEZ: She knew who I was, yes.  They knew, and I am very excited about going to Auburn, I think it is a great team.  It's like a family and that's the most important thing because I am sure I am going to feel great there and the coach is great, so I am looking forward to it, yes.

Q.   Is she going to be here tomorrow?

MARU MARTINEZ: Hopefully she will.  I don't know if she's going to make it.

Q.   Another thing, I hear other people call you by a different name.

MARU MARTINEZ: Because my full name is Maria Eugenia.  It's long, so my nickname is Maru.  Everybody calls me like that.  So it depends.

Q.   Which would you prefer?

MARU MARTINEZ: Maru.  All my close friends and my family calls me like this.

Q.   The name as it's on the bag is the full name; is that correct?

MARU MARTINEZ: Yes.

Q.   What sorts of things have you been working on in your game?  You said you have been working on some  ‑‑

MARU MARTINEZ: You always try to get better.  You always want to be better, and I have been working on my swing, my technique and my putter and everything.  I think that I have been working my whole game and I have gotten better so I am happy.  Yeah, I have got to keep working.

Q.   Is your swing a lot different from the way it was a couple of years ago or do you think it's just that you have kind of made small refinements as opposed to a complete makeover?

MARU MARTINEZ: I think it's small, but important changes, yes, that have made the difference in my game.

Q.   Such as your grip, stance?

MARU MARTINEZ: My stance, yes.  And my swing plane a little bit.  It was not bad, but it has to get better.

RHONDA GLENN:  You try make it more upright or a little flat.

MARU MARTINEZ: More round.

RHONDA GLENN:  Maru, thank you very much.  Congratulations.  That was a real good win for you.

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