4/21/22 Tennis Memo

Tennis Manual for 2022

The 2022 manual is on the IGHSAU website. Click here to download a copy.

All coaches should become aware of changes dealing with tournament play for this season.  Be sure to take a moment to look at the changes and refresh yourself with the tennis rules. 

Coaching Ethics and Placement of Players

Please note the importance of the placement of players in their dual and team tournament lineups. Ethics for coaches dictate that the best player competes against the best player from the opposing school, and the second-best players compete against each other, etc. This pertains to your double teams, too. Changes in a school’s lineup may occur due to a player's injury, absence, or illness. However, realignment of players to earn team points is not ethical and does not represent good sportsmanship. For example, a player or a doubles team has played together all year. Then, the week before the tournament, they change positions in the lineup in singles, or the doubles team goes from being the #1 to #2 or #3 doubles team to a lower position. This is not in the best interest of the sport of tennis. Athletic Directors, please sit down with your coaches and go over this critical point and the importance of playing the correct players in the proper positions. Players and parents KNOW when a coach manipulates a lineup to win. Do not let your school be the school that other schools label as a cheating school in tennis for years to come. Hold yourself and your team to the highest level of integrity to ensure fair competition.

Tennis Tournament Hosting

If your school is interested in hosting regional tournaments, please indicate that on the site availability form, so we know that you are willing to host. AD’s, take a moment to check that you have submitted that material to the state office, including the signed host contract. Click here to view the list of schools that have applied to host regional tennis. 

Tennis Spectator Behavior Expectations

We continue to encourage creating a positive environment for all athletes to compete. Please talk with your coaches and parents about the importance of positive behavior at all matches. You, as an Athletic Director can do a great deal of good by having this meeting with your coaches. Spectators who display inappropriate behaviors or use offensive or degrading language will be asked to leave IGHSAU events. 

Announcing Score During the Match

We encourage our coaches to work with their players to announce the score before every point, loudly enough for the receiver to hear. Ask players to confirm the match score on every changeover. If scorecards are being used, change the score on every changeover. When players do this, we have fewer issues with scoring for matches. Coaches, take time to stress this point. 

Tennis Balls

We know you are having some issues finding tennis balls this year. You may can use any ball as long as it is USTA approved.  That includes Penn or Dunlap balls as well as the Wilson ball. 

Introduction of Coaches

Before a match begins, be sure to introduce all coaches for each team at the match. That would include all assistants and school-approved volunteer coaches too. This will help identify who should be speaking with the players during the 90-second coaching opportunity. Go over page 13 of the manual with all players before a match begins!

90 Second Coaching Opportunity / Crossover

Please remind your players the 90 seconds starts after the point is finished, NOT when you get to their courts to talk to them. You do not have to speak to your players on every crossover. 

During the 10-Point Match Tiebreak, the following rules apply:

*There is a three-minute break between the 2nd set and the 10-Point Match Tiebreak.

*New balls are NOT given to the players for the 10-Point Match Tiebreak.

*Play is continuous during the 10-Point Match Tiebreak, and no coaching opportunities exist during the 10-Point Match Tiebreak.

*Players change ends every six points during the 10-Point Match Tiebreak. There is to be no coaching during the crossover time.

*The first player, or doubles team, to win ten points, by a margin of two, is declared the winner.

*The score for the 10-Point Match Tiebreak is recorded as 1-0 (x), with the (x) being the number of points won by the loser in the Match Tiebreak.


ONE scrimmage date is allowed per school, and it must happen after the first Friday in May (6th) and before the first day of the State Singles and Doubles Tournament May 27. This scrimmage can be with one person or with a whole team or with several teams. There can only be ONE scrimmage date. There can be no official results and the scrimmage does not count as a part of a team/individual record.

Rules Meeting and Concussion Course

Coaches, be sure you have watched the online rules meeting. You cannot coach at the tournament level until you take the rules meeting online!! If you failed to get this done, contact the State Office ASAP. 

Reporting Results for Tennis

Coaches are REQUIRED to report results weekly this year. If a school does not report scores on Bound, please let them know they need to report their scores. When another school points this out to the coach, the scores are usually entered.

Team/Single and Double Pairings

Because of issues with lack of competition and results in the early season due to weather, regional tennis pairings will be released on the following dates: 

Singles and Doubles regionals are set for Wednesday, May 11. The pairings and site locations will be released on May 2. 

The first round of team play begins on May 14, with all 1A teams and 32 of the 48 2A teams playing. Pairings for the team tournament will be posted on May 9. We understand this is tight for scheduling, but coaches have requested a later release to get more matches in so we can look at results before pairings are set.

Team Line-ups

Every school in the Team Tennis tournament will submit the team lineup it will use for the entire tournament sereis to the State Office by May 12, 2022. That includes teams who have a bye on the 14th.  You may submit your lineup to the IGHSAU by using the following e-mail [email protected]. This will be the lineup you will use the entire tournament unless you have an injury or a sub for an approved reason…then you will follow the procedure listed in the tennis manual. Be sure you do this before the 4:00 p.m deadline. THIS YEAR YOUR AD MUST SUBMIT YOUR TEAM LINEUP USING THE FORM THAT WILL BE POSTED ON OUR WEB SITE BY THE END OF THE MONTH. YOUR AD WILL VERIFY THE LINEUP AS BEING CORRECT AND PLAYERS PLAYING IN THE PROPER POSITIONS. THIS INCLUDES DOUBLES TEAMS. YOUR AD WILL ASSUME THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THAT LINEUP BEING CORRECT. AD’S - PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO CHECK THAT THE LINEUP IS CORRECT FOR YOUR SCHOOL.

Team Tennis format

All matches for the entire team tennis tournament will end when a team reaches 5 points. 

Tennis Scoring this year for Tournaments

Team Play (all levels). - 

All matches are 2 out of 3 with no ad scoring, with the 3rd set being a 10 point match tiebreak. For the first two sets, a 7 point tiebreak is used.

Singles/ Doubles Regional Play - All rounds (matches) up to the semi-finals are 2 out of 3 with no ad scoring, with the 3rd set being a 10 point match tiebreak. For the first two sets, a 7 point tiebreak is used. At the semi-finals and finals, traditional scoring will be used with ad.

Singles/ Doubles State Play - All matches in the main draw are 2 out of 3 with ad (traditional scoring) unless there is a weather issue, then please see the manual for this change. All matches in the consolation draw are 2 out of 3 with no ad scoring, with a 3rd set being a 10 point match tiebreak.  Please see the manual for more info on scoring for all matches.

State Co-ed Tournament

The State Co-ed tournament will be held on June 7. Be sure to look over the instructions for that tournament in the tennis manual.Please note that only students who are currently in grades 9-12 can play in that tournament. You cannot use an 8th-grade student. Entry for Co-ed must be into the IGHSAU State Office by June 6 at noon.

State Meet Sites

Singles / Doubles

Class 1A University of Iowa Tennis Center, Iowa City

Class 2A Waukee Northwest Tennis Courts, Waukee

State Team Tennis

Class 1A Waveland Tennis Courts, Des Moines

Class 2A Waukee Northwest Tennis Courts, Waukee

State Co-ed Sites

Class 2A Prairie Ridge Sports Complex, Ankeny

Class 1A Waveland Tennis Courts, Des Moines

Have a great spring of tennis, and thank you for the work that you do for our youth!

Craig Ihnen & Jean Berger