U.S. SENIOR WOMEN'S AMATEUR
Pamela Kuong: 2015 U.S. Senior Women's Amateur Runner-Up October 1, 2015 | NASHVILLE, TENN.

Karen Garcia outlasted Pamela Kuong to win the U.S. Senior Women's Amateur at Hillwood C.C. in Nashville, Tenn. (USGA/Matt Sullivan)

Q. Pam, you came really close today. How do you feel about how you played in this championship?
PAM KUONG: Well, the front nine, I didn't play well on the front nine. Thank God I played well on the back.

But it's a little too late. You can't give nine holes to your competitor in the finals of a USGA event.

Really it was my putter that let me down on the front nine. That's really been my key this whole week.

But I'm so happy for Karen. Karen is a great person and she deserved it. She made the clutch birdies when she had to.

You know, disappointed, yes, but thrilled for Karen.

Q. Was there a turning point in this match? She obviously went 2-up in the first three holes. That probably got your attention pretty quick, didn't it?
PAM KUONG: Yeah. I 3-putted like from not very far on 3. Then I missed another putt both on 7 and 8 that I should have made, and that's how she got 3-up on me.

But the back nine, I finally found my swing and played a lot better on the back nine. Had back-to-back birdies. Mistake. I mean, hindsight is I shouldn't have gone for 17 given that it was in the rough. Went into the hazard, so that kind of killed me.

I knew coming into 18 there was no way I was reaching that green, so I had to get up and down. I knew with her length I knew she could make it. The course played long today with the rain and the wind today.

Q. You had wind in your face on 18, too, didn't you?
PAM KUONG: Oh, my God, it was brutal. Karen didn't even make it and she hits it a mile.

But, you know...

Q. Tell me about the two back-to-back birdies, where were they and how long were the putts.
PAM KUONG: 14 and 15.

14 was probably maybe a 12-footer. Par-3.

Then I would say 15 was maybe a 15-, 20-footer, something like that. Both were in perfect places. They were below the pin and I rolled them center cut.

Then of course I parred 16. Just a mistake on 17. I mean, I should have laid up before the creek because it was iffy whether I could make it, and that rough just caught the club a little bit, enough -- I mean, almost cleared, but it's a game of inches.

Q. When you made those two birdies did you think, Okay, here we go? This is that back nine. Because you've played that back nine really well.
PAM KUONG: I know. I've played the back nine really well. And even on 17 my drive was fine. It was just slightly caught into the rough. I really should have laid up before the hazard because I still was 1-up. I didn't have to go over it. That was a mistake on my part.

I think we were thinking, Well, it's downwind. It'll carry. You know, in hindsight I would like to have that shot back.

Q. How tough was your opponent today?
PAM KUONG: Oh, Karen was awesome. I mean, she definitely struggled in the beginning. I think both of us with the rain and the wind it was crazy. We really didn't have much time turning it around. I think we were both out of sync, and the back nine we both played well.

I just think we -- so the back nine was like real golf. Front nine we were looking at each like, What is going on?

But it was fun. Had a great match. I was thrilled to play with Karen and she deserves it.

Q. What do you take away from this match?
PAM KUONG: Well, from this match or...

Q. For the whole week.
PAM KUONG: For the week, you know, I think it's a confidence thing, the fact that I beat some really good players. I struggled with my swing a bit on a couple of the matches and my putting wasn't that solid today.

So I just have to -- you know, I feel like I just have to work on -- just keep working at it. You know, hopefully next year I'll be back here. Maybe, maybe not.

Q. Next year you'll be in your backyard.
PAM KUONG: I'll be in my backyard and definitely be getting some practice rounds there. But this is a great golf course. Yeah, it was a great golf course.

Q. I think this gives you exemptions. It's not just one.
PAM KUONG: I heard two or three is what somebody said. I'm thrilled about that, that I don't have to qualify again. That's like, fantastic.

Q. Back to work on Monday, right?
PAM KUONG: No, tomorrow. We're going to actually try to catch a flight.

Q. Tonight?
PAM KUONG: Yeah. There is a 6:15-ish? Do you think we can make that? What time is it? 5:00?

Q. I don't know.
PAM KUONG: It's like quarter of 5:00. Maybe we're not going to make it. Well, and I also want celebrate with Karen so I don't want to ditch her.

Yeah, work tomorrow morning. Then we have to catch a flight first thing tomorrow morning.

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