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MATT HENRY STORMS BACK TO CAPTURE YORK COUNTY AMATEUR
Story by Ryan Vandersloot York Dispatch
Matt Henry is never a bad choice when picking a favorite to win a York County Amateur Golf Association event.
The South Hills golfer, however, didn’t look like such a good bet entering Sunday's final round of the 2016 Quality D.O.T. York County Amateur at Royal Manchester Golf Links.
Trailing former West York High School star Josh Rinehart by four strokes entering Sunday's action, Henry started his round with a double bogey on the first hole. That sent the two-time York County Amateur champion to a six-stroke deficit with 17 holes to play.
A win at that point seemed out of the question, right?
Many of the YCAGA golfers carry a bit of an emotional side that might make a big comeback extremely difficult. The cool and steady Henry, however, shrugged off his slow start. He just got right to work doing what he’s best known for — hitting fairways and greens. Henry shot a remarkable 6-under over the next 16 holes to pull off a very memorable rally.
Despite a bogey on No. 18, Henry’s round of 3-under 69 was plenty good enough to capture his third Amateur title after shooting a combined 2-under-par 142 for the tournament. Henry had a 73 on Saturday. Rinehart, who shot a 3-under 69 Saturday, started Sunday 5 over after nine holes, but rebounded to finish second at 2-over 146 after finishing with a 5-over 77 on Sunday.
“I figured I had to play pretty well,” Henry said. “And I doubled the first hole and was like, ‘well, I’m six back … guess I better start playing some good golf.'”
That’s exactly what he did. After making par on No. 2, Henry made the first of his six birdies Sunday on No. 3. After another stretch of pars, he converted birdies on back-to-back holes (No. 8 and No. 9) to move 1-under for the round.
Henry continued his steady play, with pars sandwiching birdies on No. 12, No. 14 and No. 16.
Steve Goodley, who finished third with a 147 after a 76 on Sunday, had actually overtaken Rinehart through the first eight holes of his day. Back-to-back bogeys on No. 9 and No. 10, however, allowed Henry to move ahead.
At that point, it was clear to the field that Henry was the man to beat.
Most people know Don Dimoff as the very successful girls' basketball coach at Red Lion High School.
Another sport that Dimoff is equally passionate about, however, is golf.
One thing that ties both sports together for him is his fierce determination to win. The same guy who yells out plays and opinions during basketball games on the sideline is just as emotional when he makes or misses a putt.
While he probably will never accumulate the number of victories in golf as he has as a basketball coach — which is well north of 400 — the Red Lion coach was able to get one tiny step closer on Sunday afternoon.
Competing in the York County Amateur Golf Association Senior/Super Senior Championship at Heritage Hills Golf Resort, Dimoff was cruising through the first 13 holes at 1-under par. A bogey and a double bogey, however, quickly put some pressure on the 52 year old, playing in a tournament for golfers 50 and older.
Dimoff, however, rallied back for a birdie on No. 16, which proved to be pivotal when he earned the title by a stroke over John Lowder Jr. to capture his first YCAGA solo title with a 1-over-par 72.
“Luckily 72 was good enough," Dimoff said. "I hit a nice tee shot on 16 and got up and down for birdie, so that was big. But I still thought I needed one more birdie to finish and get back to even.”
Super Seniors: While Dimoff was able to avoid a playoff, 70-year old Robert Topper finished play tied with Lester Varner at 6 over in the Super Seniors Division (60-plus). Fortunately for Topper, who is a regular at the scorers' table during YCAGA events, Varner left the course after his round. After trying to call Varner several times, tournament director Sherm Keeney stepped in at 3:50 p.m. to declare Topper the victor by default.
“I was a par machine," Topper said. "Especially on the back nine. The front nine I was a little shaky. A couple of holes it was hard to get the ball close to the hole and hard to make putts. But the back nine things got a little easier. I started to strike the ball better and started to putt better.”
SPRING BETTER BALL: Beginning this year 2016, this event has been opened to all amateur players with a verifiable USGA Handicap. You no longer must live in York County or be a member of a YCAGA Club.
MID AMATEUR/SUMMER CLASSIC: Beginning this year, 2016, this event has been opened to all amateur players with a verifiable USGA Handicap. You no longer must live in York County or be a member of a YCAGA Club. In addition, we have partnered with LANCO GOLF ASSOCIATION in presenting the MID AMATEUR within this event. There will be a two separate divisions/playing from the same tees. The SUMMER CLASSIC is open to any age golfer. The MID AMATEUR is open to golfers 25 and older. Depending on the response this year, the MID AMATEUR may become a separate event, being hosted in York County and then in Lancaster County the following year. The tournament will rotate between each county and will become a two county Championship. War of the Roses points will be awarded by each county respectively for those players who are eligible for such points.
YORK OPEN: NOTE ERROR ON ENTRY REGARDING CUT LINE FOR SATURDAY - Beginnng this year, 2016, this event becomes a two day event for the OPEN DIVISION. First round play will be on Friday and the cut will be the top 40 plus ties to play on Saturday for the Open Championship. The SENIOR DIVISION will remain a one day event and be played on Friday at the same time as the Open Divisions's first round.
WE WANT TO EXTEND OUR SINCERE THANKS TO OUR CURRENT SPONSORS : ETZWEILER FAMILY FUNERAL SERVICE (BOB ETZWEILER) QUALITY DIGITAL OFFICE TECHNOLOGY (JEFF POET) RASPBERRY GOLF MANAGEMENT & ROYAL MANCHESTER GC (KIERON MOONEY)., CAMEO SERVICES OF YORK PA (R SCOTT KNAUB & BRANDON KNAUB) THE SUPPORT OF THESE LOCAL MERCHANTS AND INDIVIDUALS IS A MAJOR FACTOR IN THE SUCCESS OF THE YCAGA TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE AND SUCCESS.
TOURNAMENT REGISTRATION IS OPEN, REGISTRATION FORMS ARE AVAILABLE AT YOUR CLUBS AS WELL AS ON LINE.
CHANGES IN TOURNAMENTS FOR 2016
YORK OPEN: - $2,500.00 guaranteed for Low Pro. The 2016 event will be a two day event for the Open Division. The Senior Division will remain a one day event on Friday. Both Divisions are open to Pros and Amateurs.. The Open Division will be played from the Championship tees and the Senior Division will be played from the Middle Tees. If there are a minimum of 20 Seniors competing in the Open Division we will create a seperate prize fund for the Seniors .
YCAGA PARENT/GRANDPARENT - CHILD TOURNAMENT: This is a new event open to Male or Female Parents and Children. The event will be held on May 21st at Hanover CC with tee times from 11:00 to 1:00. Minimum child age "12" No maximum on the child age. (Father/Son Father/Daughter Grandfather/Son or Grandson Grandfather/Daugher or Granddaughter Mother/Son Mother/Daughter Grandmother/Son or Grandson Grandmother/Daughter or Granddaughter. Stepmom or Stepdad as well.)
Tournament Sponsors: McClarin Plastics, Quality Digital Office Technologies, Etzweiler Family Funeral Services, Apple Automotive Group
Association Sponsors: Don's Kawasaki Yamaha Seadoo, Old Towne Construction, B&W Claims LLC, Traditions Bank and H&H Castings Inc.
PATRON SPONSORS: Don't forget to either renew your Patron Sponsorship or become a new member before the start of the season. See our Patron Sponsor page to pay on line or to print an application and mail.
Thanks to all of our volunteers that work very hard in making our tournaments a success. Whether it's behind the scenes making up score cards, acquiring new sponsors, or being a spotter at one of our tournaments. Thank you. We are always looking for additional volunteers to help our with registration, spotters at the tournaments and many other functions throughout the golfing season. If you are interested please contact the tournament director or the executive director.
The YCAGA is a member of the United States Golf Association (USGA). For more information about the USGA, click here.