DALLASTOWN — At this time last year, David Trimmer was on the Dallastown junior varsity boys' tennis team — No. 11 on the ladder.
This year, Trimmer is standing six rungs higher on the ladder, in the starting varsity singles lineup.
On Tuesday, a crowd gathered outside one of the four upper-level courts at the Wildcats' complex to watch Trimmer take on Central York's Corey Caskey in the No. 5 match.
The fans migrated from the four courts down below (across from the middle school) to see if Trimmer could clinch the victory for Dallastown or if Caskey would prevail and force the outcome of the match into doubles.
"When I saw everyone, I was nervous, it was my first really big match," Trimmer said. "But I refocused and concentrated on my ground strokes."
Trimmer and Caskey traded shots in two hard-fought sets, with Trimmer coming out on top by identical scores of 6-3, 6-3.
Dallastown collected its fourth point to seal the decision.
The teams split the doubles matches, and Dallastown earned a 5-2 victory to remain unbeaten in York-Adams Division I at 4-0. Central, meanwhile, sustained its first loss, dropping to 4-1.
Trimmer said he was unaware of the team score when he was playing against Caskey.
"I just wanted to win," he said. "Wherever we were in the team score, I was OK with it."
Trimmer felt his serve was a key in enabling him to turn back Caskey.
"I got my first serve in a lot, and I tried to hit to his backhand a lot," Trimmer said. "I lost to him at Wisehaven four months ago."
So how did Trimmer make the leap from No. 11 to No. 5 in one season?
"Lots of practice," he said. "Going to Wisehaven and improving my game."
Trimmer, John Schmitt, Hunter Jones and Sachin Venkatesh earned singles points for the Wildcats (8-2 overall).
Schmitt, a senior, is the defending York-Adams singles champion. He delivered an outstanding performance in a 6-0, 6-0 triumph against Chris Maderitz.
Trimmer, Jones and Venkatesh are sophomores.
"John has a way of stepping up at the moment," Dallastown head coach Mark Koons said. "He has a tendency to get defensive, but today, John was in control most of the match."
Koons was pleased with the way that the trio of sophomores responded in a big match.
"Our guys at three, four and five (Jones, Venkatesh and Trimmer) have really grown in the last four or five weeks," Koons said. "We probably don't have anyone on the team who's improved as much as David (Trimmer). He stepped up with all those people watching, and he didn't back down at all."
Koons was pleasantly surprised that his team wrapped up the victory in singles.
"I never dreamed that the match would end in singles, either way," Koons said. "I told Coach Jensenius (Central coach Scott Jensenius) that if we played 10 times, it would probably be 5-5."
Dallastown will now turn its attention to archrival Red Lion The Wildcats will visit their next-door neighbor on Thursday for another Division I match.
"We talked about the matches coming up, Central, Red Lion, New Oxford and South Western," Koons said. "We have a long way to get to where we want to be, but this is a good first step."
Schmitt and Tyler Lilie won the No. 1 doubles match for the Wildcats.
Jeremy Garling earned Central's singles point, and Connor Bacha and Austin Pokopec teamed up to win the No. 2 doubles match for the Panthers (7-1 overall).
New Oxford 7, Dover 0: At Dover, the Colonials received singles victories from Joey Stiles, Josiah Forry, Mat Conrad, Dakota Melton and Adam Rudasill.
York Suburban 7, Delone Catholic 0: At Hanover, Elliot Diehl, Mike Peck, Dan Lee, Ben Strine and Tyr Abendschoen each earned straight-set singles wins to lead Suburban. The Trojans improved to 5-2 overall and 3-0 in York-Adams Division II.
Susquehannock 5, Gettysburg 2: At Glen Rock, the home team captured four of the five singles matches. Aaron Gervasio, Devin Glispy, Brendan Paules and John Yancheski each won a singles match for Susquehannock.
— Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.