Early Show Highlights
Survivor: Palau Episode 11 Cast-Off
Harry Smith: Stephenie LaGrossa, good morning.
Steph: Good morning.
Harry Smith: You talk about luck of the draw, in retrospect. You end up on this tribe with all of these young...remember when the show started, it was young people on one tribe, old on the other.
Steph: Oh we thought we had it. "We've got this in the bag".
Harry Smith: You could not win a challenge.
Steph: Not one.
Harry Smith: Let's go all the way back to the very beginning of the show as you're all together in one group, you had started to form some relationships and have some conversations. You had gotten together with Tom a little bit. Do you feel like it would have been a different outcome if you had not been stuck with the tribe that you had been stuck with?
Steph: I do, absolutely. I think I had a real good shot if I was on Koror, at winning the entire game. But because I was on a tribe that lost every single time...
Harry Smith: What was that like?
Steph: It was so difficult because I don't like to lose. It was really hard to come back over and over again and try to keep my head up and really go in fighting the best I could.
Harry Smith: And you end up by yourself. I mean you were really alone out there.
Steph: I did. And that was really scary for me but it was awesome because I was the last one standing on my tribe anyway. I was going to do my best. That was always my motto. No regrets, do my best, and hopefully the outcome will be right.
Harry Smith: We thought you were going to get it last week and then Janu decided to leave the game. So you dodged a bullet there. Did you have time enough...we saw you on camera trying to get the women together. Why didn't the women... wouldn't that have made sense for you guys to gang up on those guys? You just couldn't sell it to them?
Steph: Definitely. I thought I sold it to them but as I saw last night, Caryn was the one who went and said something to Tom. That's how it all got spoiled. I know that they thought that I was such a fierce competitor they didn't want to go up against me. But against those three men it really had no shot.
Harry Smith: You know better because you've sat on the jury but I'm thinking they are all sitting there thinking one of them is going to glide in under the coattails with one or two of these guys.
Harry Smith: You played four years of Division One Lacrosse. You were so tough. I'm not sure I've ever seen a woman as tough out in these challenges.
Steph: I don't even know what overcame me sometimes. I just wanted to win so I didn't think about how bad it hurt or how tired or how hungry I was. The shooting challenge was total luck because I've never shot before. I'm not so good with throwing coconuts as you saw last night.
Harry Smith: Last week, the tears, the emotion that poured out of you. What was going through you?
Steph: I knew that I was on the chopping block but I thought that because Janu didn't want to be there so badly that she was definitely going to go and that's what they told me. We got to TC and I really thought it was going to be Janu and I heard them all speaking, I knew it was me. At first I was okay but as I started to talk I got so much more upset. It was nothing against Janu. She got out of it what she wanted. I couldn't believe...why keep her around. If you're so tough, go up against the toughest of the tough.
Harry Smith: It was fun watching you play.
Rene Syler: Stephenie is back to answer some questions. Why do you think they saw you as a threat, they had Tom, Gregg, other people that were a threat. Why did they single you out?
Steph: I know I did well in the challenges but we still lost. Those men are really tough on their tribe.
Rene Syler: Maybe they were afraid of going it without the men?
Caller: If you could have had one Ulong member to remain with you into the merge, who would it be and why?
Steph: Bobby Jon because he worked really hard. He deserved to be there, too.
Rene Syler: Bobby Jon was working your last nerve.
Steph: Yeah well you're out there and he was disgustingly dirty and did gross things at camp. I won't mention the phrase that I mentioned on the show. I think Bobby Jon but Jeff Wilson was a really tough competitor but unfortunately he rolled his ankle.
Rene Syler: But then he was okay, I'm done.
Steph: But he said that he knew because he had broken it a year prior.
Caller: I want to know the impact the letters [from home] had on you that you got at the auction last night. Did they help you in your final days?
Rene Syler: You were very moved, you had a pile of letters.
Steph: Yes, I had a letter from everyone. Originally I thought I was just going to get a letter from my brother Paul, if we got letters at all. But I had one from my entire family, my boyfriend. They were just amazing.
Rene Syler: What did they say that kept you going?
Steph: Just keep your head up, we're all proud of you no matter what. Just very positive. They brought me up because at that point in the game I was really down.
Rene Syler: So you had the half a hamburger and the letters. Tom just had the letters. He said that was all the nourishment he needed.
Steph: There were some other food entrees in the auction, there wasn't time to air. They didn't show. Tom did get something.
Caller: Stephenie you're my absolute favorite. Why did you write Caryn's name down? I was so sure it was going to be Tom.
Steph: Because we were trying to do the all girl thing and it didn't work because someone did bring it up to me that they thought that Caryn may have told.
Rene Syler: Did you feel betrayed?
Steph: I did kinda. But when I spoke to Tom, Tom said "it's going to be Caryn". Because originally coming over it was going to be Coby, Janu, Caryn then wherever. There would be six of us left. But it didn't go down that way.
Rene Syler: From Mitch a caller, why did you decide to go with an alliance with the girls instead of the guys? Why not go with Tom and Ian and Gregg?
Steph: Ian and Gregg wouldn't even look me straight in the face. Tom kind of seemed like he was leaning towards them and so that was my last card to play, try to get the girls. If I was such a threat, look at these men. That's all I could think.
Rene Syler: You were formidable out there and make me want to work out, looking at you. Thanks for coming by.
Steph: Thank you so much.