Fresh off the last round these players share their excitement.
Q. Madelene, when we talked coming into this week you said you wanted to be yourself and let yourself go out and enjoy it. Did you enjoy it out there?
MADELENE SAGSTROM: It’s been a great week. The team has obviously done amazing. I haven’t really contributed until today. I was saying on the range this morning, hold on a second, I need to be myself. I need to be myself out there. I can’t play somebody else’s game, I can’t be somebody else’s character. I need to be myself, and I really found that today. I grinded hard. Ally put up a really good fight, so we had a really solid game going, and I’m really proud of myself.
Q. You said the last time when you were in Des Moines, the crowds, that there was so much cheering against you and that’s kind of unnerving, but you said this time you’d be a little bit more prepared. How do you think you did that that?
MADELENE SAGSTROM: Yeah, last time I was a rookie on Tour and I’ve had four years under my belt. It’s definitely tough. I’m kind of — they’re still cheering for me, but you still hear, “good shot,” when you do well, but it’s quite loud out there, I’m not going to lie.
Q. How pleased are you with that victory?
MADELENE SAGSTROM: Oh, I’m very happy right now. I didn’t have the best start to the week. I’ve been playing really well. We’ve been playing well, both with Nanna and with Georgia yesterday. We just couldn’t pull a win through, so I’m really happy that I went out and got a point for the team today.
Q. With everything that happened, how important was it for you to come out here on singles and get that point?
MADELENE SAGSTROM: Well, I was really happy Catriona decided to put me out first thing Sunday morning, just showing that she believes in me, showing that the team has got my back, so that was really nice. We put up a great fight, and it was just nice today to be able to go out — I played some really good golf today. Ally did, too, so we had a really good game, but I’m really happy to be on the winning side.
Q. Give us a bit of insight into how it was this morning in the team room. What sort of things did Catriona say to you? It’s looking pretty good with blue on the board right now.
MADELENE SAGSTROM: I think the thing she’s focused on in singles is go out, it’s a new game, obviously you can see scoreboards, but your point is the only thing that matters. You go out in your match and that’s all you can do, and now we’re going to be there for everybody else.
She just has so much belief in us. She’s said that from day one. It’s such a great atmosphere to be around, and it just really fuels both my confidence and that I believe in myself so much, the fact that she believes in us.
Q. Just over a year ago you came here to Inverness and caddied for your friend Anne van Dam. Did you think in your wildest dreams you would be here today part of the winning Solheim Cup team?
SOPHIA POPOV: Probably not, no. I couldn’t even predict what was going to happen the week after and the week after that, more importantly.
So I think that dream just became real once I won the Open, and before that I never in a million years would have thought I was going to be standing here and just be teeing it up with all these amazing girls, not only on our team, obviously on the American team. They’re so stacked, and it was just — it was just so enjoyable. Such an amazing moment.
Q. What do you think it was about the makeup of your team and the players and the character they have that produced this result?
SOPHIA POPOV: I think we have a great mix of experience and obviously rookies, and we have someone like Leona who just came out and said, All right, I’m going to snatch every point, or at least a half.
I think just all of us, we fight so hard, even myself. I know I had three tough matches, but three tough battles that could have gone either way.
And today I tried everything I could, and that fight, I think all of us have that in us, and I think that’s what makes the team so special, and I think it starts with leaders like Beanie, like Suzann who’s been in that position two years ago, and Catherine.
I think it’s just a great balance of experience and newbies.
Q. Retained the Cup for Europe; how does it feel?
MATILDA CASTREN: It feels amazing. It’s just crazy, crazy. I can’t believe I made that putt. I knew it was important. I knew it was going to break a little bit left.
Me and Mikey read the putt perfectly and it went in. It’s just such an amazing feeling, and so proud to be part of this team.
Q. Tell us what was going through your mind the last few holes as it was so tense and you know that anything can happen. What was going through your mind the last few holes?
MATILDA CASTREN: I was just trying to play my best. She’s a tough competitor, and I knew she was going to make some putts and make some birdies and hit some good shots.
I was just trying to play my best and give it all I’ve got and hit some good shots and roll some good putts, and some of them went in.
Q. Give us a sense of how your week has been. What are some of the experiences that you had? How do you feel standing at the back of 18 now being a Solheim Cup team player?
MATILDA CASTREN: It’s been such a cool experience. I mean, it’s more than I could have asked for, playing with Anna in the foursomes and four-ball matches. It was so much fun, and we did great.
Just the team atmosphere is so great. Everyone is so supportive of one another, and just the chemistry is amazing. Our bus rides, we were listening to music, and it was just like everyone was hoping the best for each other, and yeah, I think it’s the team really that made this happen.
We worked really well together all of us and we got all along and had so much fun together. It’s just been an amazing experience, and I’m so, so happy I made it.
Q. How much of a different player do you feel you are after these days? Do you feel more confident perhaps?
MATILDA CASTREN: I mean, it’s been intense, an immense amount of pressure, especially today. I was really nervous these last few holes, and I think — I mean, I learned a lot playing with Anna and just playing under pressure. That’s always something you want to do, and when you perform well under pressure, that’s even better.
I’m definitely coming out a more confident player after this week and just a lot of experiences and just amazing week.
Q. You have retained the Solheim Cup for Team Europe on U.S. soil. How does that sound?
MATILDA CASTREN: That sounds amazing. We have Suzann’s photo when she made the putt at Gleneagles. It’s in our locker room when you get out of the locker. I look at it every day, and I hope one day that can be me and I hope I can handle the pressure.
To have retained the Cup, I mean, it’s such an amazing feeling. There was a little part of me that thought I wasn’t able to do it, but I don’t know, I guess just the pressure, and it just made me focus a little bit more, and just rolled those putts in.