PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- Rich Berberian Jr. of Hooksett, New Hampshire, and Mike Small of Champaign, Illinois, have won the respective 2017 OMEGA PGA Professional and Senior PGA Professional Player of the Year awards.
The twosome will be honored on Friday, June 15, in conjunction with the 51st PGA Professional Championship at Bayonet Black Horse in Seaside, California.
It is the second consecutive national award for Berberian, 30, a PGA Director of Instruction at Vesper Country Club in Tyngsboro.
The 2016 PGA Professional Champion, Berberian secured this year's PGA Professional Player of the Year honor through winning New England PGA Player of the Year honors; finishing tied for fifth in the PGA Professional Championship in June; making the cut in two PGA Tour events and finishing fourth this month on the PGA Tournament Series money list.
Berberian finished with 907.917 total points, while reigning PGA Professional Champion Omar Uresti of Austin, Texas, was runner-up with 846.5. Rod Perry, the 2013 national Champion, was third (807.500) and Alex Beach of Paramus, New Jersey, fourth (751.964).
Berberian and Mike San Filippo (1993) are the only New England PGA members to capture the national award.
"It was a year filled with golf, a lot of travel, great opportunities, and a period where I learned a lot about myself," said Berberian, who got married, took a new job and competed in six PGA Tour events that he earned exemptions from winning the 2016 national championship.
He competed in the PGA Championship and in September represented his country on the U.
"I enjoyed a great year at my home club, where they were very kind and supportive of me to be out competing," said Berberian. "I consider myself lucky to have won one. It took one great putt (a 33-foot birdie) on the last hole (at Turning Stone Resort). That changed my life forever.
"I owe last year's Player of the Year award to that putt, that week. That really opened the floodgates. In my mind, this year's award is a bonus."