Berberian, Hanefeld Finish Under Par at Challenging Section Championship
-East Greenwich, RI
Rich Berberian, Jr, PGA (Vesper CC) shot a 66 (-3) in his opening round to lead the field at Warwick CC in the 2018 NEPGA Section Championship. Both Warwick CC and Quidnessett CC bore their teeth as NEPGA Professionals tried to make deep cuts into the competition. Only two players in the overall contest were under par on Monday.
Berberian and Kirk Hanefeld, PGA (Salem CC) both began their Section Championship journeys at Warwick CC. The seaside Donald Ross course features major undulations on its fast-paced greens and was set to bring out the best in the PGA Professionals. They finished as the only two players under par for the day.
As one of many very accomplished players in the section, Berberian started his round with solid play. He made a birdie on two and eight solid pars to make the turn at 33 (-1). He was dialed in through Monday’s round, making three more birdies on 10, 12 and 15 and only one bogey on the 18th. His single bogey is not to be understated, as the scoring average at Warwick CC was just fewer than 76 (+7).
Hanefeld’s round wasn’t quite as even keel as Berberian’s. He began at Warwick by making bogey on the first hole. He followed it up with a birdie on two, but was quickly back to +1 with a bogey on three. He refocused and was able to make two more birdies on five and eight, to make the turn at one-under-par.
On the back, Hanefeld made solid pars, and two birdies on 15 and 16 on the way back in the clubhouse. He made only one more bogey on the 17th on his way to finish in sole possession of 2nd place with a 67 (-2) .
Hunting for Hardware
New England PGA Section Championship on the Horizon
- Boylston, MA
The New England PGA’s signature event of its golf season will take place in Rhode Island next week. The NEPGA Section Championship kicks off at Quidnessett Country Club and Warwick Country Club on August 20-22.
The three-day event will feature the best New England Professionals, as they compete for the Section crown. Professionals will be split amongst Quidnessett CC and Warwick CC on the first day, playing the opposite course on the second day of play. The low 60 PGA professionals (plus ties) will then advance to play for the Championship on Wednesday at Quidnessett CC.
Tee times throughout the Championship begin at 8am. All competitors begin on the first tee at either Warwick or Quidnessett.
The two Rhode Island clubs just across Narragansett Bay have hosted the Championship between their facilities only once before in 1995. In that year, John Hickson, PGA (Bath CC) was crowned champion. Hickson will be in the field for the 2018 event as well and can be a top contender.
The top 12 finishers in the Championship will qualify for the 2019 PGA Professional Championship at Belfair in Bluffton, SC. The PPC will be from April 28th- May 1st in 2019, departing from its traditional October dates due to the PGA Championship’s move to May.
The 160 Professional field will feature several past champions as well as young talent. The average age in the 2018 registered field is 36.