Missouri Valley / Heart Of America

Tri-Level Leagues Offer Fun Team Tennis

Jerod Fox | June 22, 2020

Tennis is great as a social sport. It can allow you to meet new people, or see old friends and catch up on life. However, a problem can arise: oftentimes, the people that you would like to play with are on a different level than you when it comes to tennis ability.


With Tri-Level leagues, this problem is solved! Offered through the USTA Heart of America for the fourth time, the Tri-Level league brings together teams with players rated at different levels on the NTRP system. Each team is comprised of three doubles teams, one playing at a 3.0 level, one at a 3.5 level and the last at a 4.0 level. Kathy Loepp and Jody Holsinger, the co-coordinators of the USTA Heart of America Tri-Level leagues, view it as an opportunity to compete with friends that you normally might not have the chance to compete with.


“It enables players and friends of differing abilities to be able to be together in a team format,” Holsinger said. “I’m excited to bring awareness of it and excitement for it, because I think a lot of people don’t realize what it has to offer.”


The league is played each year with a chance to travel to a national Tri-Level championship hosted each year by the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, Calif. Teams qualify by emerging from their sectional tournament, and the national tournament is held at the same time as the BNP Paribas Open.


Loepp has been involved in the Heart of America Tri-Level Leagues since their formation four years ago, and has seen how they’ve evolved over time. The women’s league has 12 teams this year, while the men’s league has six, the most in league history.


“I think when people play it for a season, they’ll want to come back,” Loepp said. “With 12 teams playing, I think it’s going to be a very competitive league and a very fun league.”


After tennis was put on hold for an extended period of time due to COVID-19, players are excited to get back onto the court, and the Tri-Level league grants an opportunity not only to play tennis, but to spend time with friends.


“What I’ve seen, a lot of people are ready to get back on the court,” Holsinger said. “I think that people are becoming much more comfortable with the process and with what is being required to be on the court.”


Enrollment for Tri-Level leagues has ended for this year, but they will be back and even better next year.


Get involved with a local USTA league. 

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