HANOVER -- Things couldn't have been set up any better for Matt Henry on Sunday.
The South Hill golfer was trying to win his first York County Amateur Golf Association Champion of Champions title.
The event, which was sponsored by Etzweiler Family Funeral Services, was held at Henry's home course. As he well knows, the better you understand a course, the better you will likely play.
But after three holes, that theory wasn't holding up well. The two-time York County Amateur champion was 2-over par -- an atypical start for one of the better amateur players in the area.
The tough luck, however, wasn't about to hang around forever. Henry righted himself after that slow start and, despite missing a few chances for birdies, got his game back together.
By the time it was over, Henry was holding the coveted trophy after besting the field with a 1-under 70. The quartet of Jeff Poet, Gary Stewart Jr., Alex Hofstrand and Bobby Stiffler each finished tied for second with 3-over 74s.
"I know how the course plays," Henry said. "It's not easy and you got to know where to put it. Being a member here was definitely a huge advantage."
Not even a short and sudden, if not unexpected, downpour could throw off one of the county's longest-hitting golfers. While just about to finish his round on No. 17, the black cloud that hung over the course unleashed a 10-plus-minute deluge before quickly dissipating.
"A zero percent chance of rain?" Henry joked. "We were there and got soaked.
By then, there was little anyone could do to stop Henry, who has been dealing with a dislocated finger on his right hand.
"I started hitting it good late on the front nine," he said. "I made a birdie on eight, but I could have birdied seven, could have birdied six. Five I just missed. I just missed a lot of birdies."
After a couple of bogeys on No. 11 and No. 12, Henry rebounded by converting on a 12-foot eagle putt on No. 13 to get back to even.
"I took a 5-wood," he said. "It was between a 5-wood and a 4-iron because that's all that I carry. So I hit it right there at the stick and it stuck there just right below the hole."
That gave Henry some separation from the field. The other contenders were all in the clubhouse awaiting the South Hills golfer to finish his round.
"Even par was a good score here today," Henry said. "I knew that the guys were all like around (par). So I knew I had a chance and said, 'well, I better keep putting the pressure on them.'"
Falling short of victory was something that Henry jokingly said he didn't even want to consider heading into the event. Fortunately he made sure that didn't occur.
"I knew there was probably 15 guys in (the clubhouse) waiting for me from team play to come in," Henry said with a laugh. "I knew they'd be ragging on me if I didn't put in a good showing."
In all seriousness, Henry was very pleased to capture one of the events that has eluded him over the years.
"This is big because it's one that I've never won," he said. "And this is my home course and it means a lot to me to win here."
SHORB ADVANCES TO MATCH PLAY: Country Club of York golfer Connie Shorb has again advanced to the match-play portion of the United States Golf Association Senior Women's Amateur.
Shorb fired back-to-back rounds of 81 over the weekend at the par-74, 6,220-yard Hershey Country Club West Course, good for a tie for 36th place in stroke-play qualifying. Shorb had a 162 total.
Shorb has played in the event 13 times and each time advanced out of stroke-play qualifying and into the match-play action, which is limited to the top 64 players from stroke-play qualifying. In her best-ever performance, Shorb reached the quarterfinals.
In her first-round match on Monday, Shorb will take on Mina Harden of Mexico, who qualified with a 159 total.
Lisa Schlesinger, 54, of Laytonsville, Md., earned medalist honors for the second consecutive year with a 36-hole total of 1-over-par 149.
SHUMAN WINS HONEY RUN SENIOR TITLE: Matt Shuman fired a 70 to win the senior club championship at Honey Run Golf Course.
Dale Bievenour placed second with a 76, and Bob Topper took third with a 78.
Jim Krall was first in the net division with a 71. He was followed by Jerry Westerhold (73) and Jeff Spangler (74).
Bill Traum won the super senior club title with an 80. Dan Druck captured first net with a 69.
-- Reach Ryan Vander sloot at sports@yorkdis patch.com.