Notes: Par-4 sixth the ultimate risk-reward hole
GRANITEVILLE, S.C. – No. 6 at Sage Valley is the epitome of risk-reward.
On Saturday at the Junior Invitational, Loblolly Bay -- a 336-yard par-4 -- was playing at 300 yards as the tees were moved up tremendously from yesterday’s first round.
PHOTOS: Round 2 at Junior Invitational
Check out images of the field during the second round of the Junior Invitational at Sage Valley.
In the second round, the hole played at an average of 3.76.
On one hand, Jacob Joiner of Albany, Ga., hit the green from the tee and two-putted for birdie, meanwhile Jamie Lopez Rivarola of Argentina had one of two double bogeys on the hole during the second round.
Joiner isn’t a long hitter. He can usually hit his driver 275 yards in the air. In this case, he decided to take a full driver. He aimed it right over the bunkers on the right hand side and it cut perfectly. It ran up on the green to 20 feet. Joiner missed his eagle attempt, but tapped in for birdie.
“It was a risk, but I felt very confidence with my driver today,” Joiner said.
Lopez Rivarola is the exact opposite of Joiner; he’s a long hitter. Instead of using driver, he used 3-wood and pushed it right off the tee. Trees are lined down the fairway on the 6th. He chipped it twice before he could get out of the trees. Once he got it out, Lopez Rivarola proceeded to three-putt from the fringe.
“With the tee box up 10 yards, I guessed my 3-wood would be perfect,” Lopez Rivarola said after hitting it 290 yards yesterday when the tees were back. “It was a tough hole today.”
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DROP IT LOW: The scoring average was down significantly from Friday’s first round. Yesterday’s scoring average was 75.9. Saturday’s second round played about five shots better, coming in at 70.2. The course was a lot softer after the overnight and morning rainfall meaning players were able to aim at flags.
The biggest scoring improvement from the first- and second-round was Alejandro Tosti of Argentina. In the first round Tosti struggled with a 13-over 85. He bounced back with a 2-under 70 in the no-wind, green-softened conditions.
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GO TIGERS: Austin Langdale shot 2-under 70 to move into a tie for third at 2 under entering Sunday's final round.
Langdale played in front of the biggest gallery of the day on Saturday. That was mainly due to Augusta, Ga., native Greyson Sigg playing in the same group. But Langdale had a few fans out there, as well, including a family of Clemson fans decked out in Tigers apparel.
"No, they weren't my family," said Langdale, a Clemson signee. "I actually had no clue who they were. But it was nice to see them out supporting me."
The family said they lived locally and wanted to come out an watch Langdale and fellow Clemson signee Carson Young, who is also 2 under for the tournament.
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SHORT SHOTS: Augusta native Greyson Sigg is giving the home crowd something to cheer about. Sigg shot 71-72 for a 1-under 143 total. He had the biggest crowd gallery of the day, too. . . On Sunday, tee times will be moved up to a split tee start at 8:00 a.m. due to weather moving into the area in the afternoon. The leaders will start heading off No. 1 around 9:00 a.m.. . . The high score of the day went to Poland’s Jan Szmidt, Jr., with a 11-over 83. Over the last two days he has 15 bogeys and one birdie. . . Golfweek’s No. 1-ranked junior Robby Shelton and Sam Burns tied for the low round of the day with a 4-under 68.
- Brentley Romine contributed