Northeastern is team turnaround in Division I of the York-Adams Boys' Tennis League this season.
"We were 4-7 last year, and we're 10-2 this year," said Bobcats' head coach Tim Law, whose team will take on Cedar Crest on Thursday in the opening round of the District 3 Class 3-A Team Championships at 12:45 p.m. at Hershey Racquet Club. "The guys deserve a lot of credit. Of the seven losses last year, six were shutouts."
Northeastern finished in a three-way tie for second place in the large-school division behind champion Dallastown. The Bobcats, Red Lion and South Western were all 6-2 in division play.
"It (the three-way tie) was about the match-ups," Law said. "We defeated South Western, Red Lion defeated us and South Western defeated Red Lion."
Law's players began preparing for the 2017 season months before the opening match.
"The guys worked hard in the offseason, and they were at Wisehaven (Tennis Center) all through the winter," Law said. "We've really come a long way."
Two Northeastern players, Eric Nagel and Lance Fries, won opening-round matches in the York-Adams Class 3-A Singles Tournament. Nagel later teamed with Alec Schroter to win a medal for a fourth-place finish in the York-Adams Class 3-A Doubles Tournament.
Northeastern will be challenged big time in its District 3 test, but, whatever the outcome, the Bobcats will be able to look back fondly on the 2017 season.
Wildcats get bye: York-Adams champion Dallastown (13-0 overall) won't play its first District 3 3-A Tournament match until Monday, when the top-seeded Wildcats take on the winner of Thursday's South Western-Hershey clash. Monday's match is listed for 4 p.m. at Dallastown High School.
Hershey edged Dallastown, 3-2, in last year's team semifinals. The Wildcats then won the third-place match to gain a berth in states.
Dallastown has captured four District 3 3-A team titles, with the most recent one coming in 2006.
"It (the 2017 district bracket) is a tough draw," Dallastown head coach Mark Koons said. "Any one of three or four teams could win it (the title)."
Along with winning Division I honors, Dallastown's Holden Koons repeated as York-Adams Class 3-A singles champion, and Koons and Hunter Jones won their second straight York-Adams Class 3-A doubles crown.
Koons will also attempt to defend his District 3 3-A singles crown this weekend at HRC. Koons, a sophomore, is the top seed in the event. The first round and quarterfinals in singles are Friday, followed by the semifinals and finals on Saturday. Koons is the only York-Adams player to earn a top-four seed.
York-Adams Division II champion Littlestown will represent the league in the district 2-A team bracket.
The Thunderbolts (11-2) will meet East Pennsboro (10-2) in the first round. The match is listed for 2 p.m. Monday at Hershey Racquet Club.
Like Dallastown, Littlestown swept York-Adams singles and doubles titles. Brett Gill captured the 2-A singles crown, and he and Noah DeCampo came out on top in the 2-A doubles tournament.
The Thunderbolts' success this season didn't go unnoticed.
"I never heard tennis talked about so much at Littlestown," DeCampo said.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at email@example.com.