GRANITEVILLE — The Junior Invitational at Sage Valley has established a reputation for providing golfers with the best of everything, ranging from accommodations to food to caddies.
On Friday night, the tournament surprised players with a unique gift that is normally reserved for elite professionals: custom-made shoes.
Thanks to Nike and with the help of pro golfer Lucas Glover, each player received custom sneakers in personalized bags.
Travis Thompson of Nike said the LunarFly+ iD 1.5 shoes were customized in tournament colors green and yellow with accents in black and white.
One shoe tongue has the word “Sage” on it, and the other has “Valley.” Each pair comes with a custom tag that has the player’s name, tournament, year and the order in which they were accepted into the tournament.
Glover, a former Clemson star who won the 2009 U.S. Open, was scheduled to address the players at a dinner Friday night.
At professional majors, golf manufacturers often produce special gear for their players. At this year’s Masters Tournament, Nike unveiled its limited-edition Lunar Control shoes that were all white with green accents.
“We believe this is a major championship of junior golf,” said Russ Krueger, one of the tournament’s committee members. “We think they’re going to be overly excited.”
TOURNAMENT FUTURE: Electrolux is the presenting sponsor of the Junior Invitational, and is in its second year of a three-year contract.
Electrolux’s Mark Chambers didn’t hesitate when asked Friday about extending the deal.
“We would love to have this opportunity beyond our three-year contract,” Chambers said.
That comment drew smiles from Sage Valley founders Weldon and Tom Wyatt and tournament chairman Paul Simon.
“We’re very happy with the association,” Chambers said.
SIGG’S DAY: Augusta’s Greyson Sigg had a tough day on the greens Friday and posted 4-over 76.
“I played really, really well today,” Sigg said. “I had six or seven lipouts, no joke.”
Sigg, a junior at Richmond Academy, made bogeys at Nos. 3, 4, 6 and 8. He had no birdies in his round.
“Tough day for a lot of kids,” he said. “The pins were really hard.”