MSHSL Points of Emphasis

Girls High School

Below are reminders on rules and points of emphasis that come up during the season to help everyone improve and stay on the same page.


October 3 Reminder

The MSHSL had received reports from across the state of teams not immediately clearing the court at the end of their warmup session. They felt this could result in a safety issue when one team is hitting or serving while the other is running on.

So in an effort to better facilitate this switch of possession between the two teams, the R2 will give a double tweet warning whistle 15 seconds prior to the horn. This gives the team on the court the opportunity to shag balls as a show of sportsmanship during the last few seconds of their court time, but it does NOT mean the other team can go on the court during those 15 seconds, nor does it mean that the current team must stop warming up.

All we're doing as officials is giving a heads up that the time is coming to an end so both teams are better aware and can prepare for the switch. Officials should refrain from dictating what teams do/do not do during those 15 seconds any differently than what we did without the warning whistle.


September 8 Reminder

All matches (varsity & sub-varsity) begin with the teams lining up on their respective end lines. When R1 signals teams to the court, starters should go straight to their starting positions on the court vs back to their bench or huddling on the court.

For sub-varsity, it's fine if teams only send starters to the end line. And if you are working that match by yourself, you may signal them onto the court from the R2 side, check the lineups, leave lineups on the scorers table, give the ball to the first server, and then head over to the R1 stand.

Current protocol only has players shake hands at the end of the matches because the MSHSL decided teams could head straight into the locker rooms to wash hands after the match.

Be pleasant and helpful when teaching this process, not stern & lecturing. We are training sub-varsity players for when they get to varsity on the protocols, so we want be as consistent as possible so they learn the process.


September 7 Reminder

MVOA officials should be prepared to follow the guidance stated in the 2022-23 MSHSL Volleyball Rules, Policies & Bylaws document with regard to the sub-varsity 3rd set when one team has already won the first 2 sets. The complete document can be found at this URL for your reading pleasure:

**NOTE: Wright County Conference schools have adopted this as their policy and the default is to play the 3rd set. Still ask, but be aware that the answer will likely always be yes.


"If a team wins a sub-varsity match in two sets, the competing schools may elect to play the third set. If the third set is played match officials and contest personnel (scorers, timers, etc.) must be present and the set must be counted as one of the five sets per day (or 15 for tournament exception) permitted for individual players.

The third set shall not be played if contest personnel (scorers, timers, etc.) are not available.

If schools elect not to play the third set but elect to conduct a scrimmage without officials and contest personnel during the available time prior to the next match, the scrimmage must adhere to Bylaw 411, Scheduling of Contests, Game Definition.

Schools should decide prior to a sub-varsity match whether they will play a third set or conduct a scrimmage and notify the game officials and contest personnel. If both coaches cannot agree, the third set cannot be played. The schedule of matches should respect the contracted times for the match officials."

MVOA includes Line Judges in the definition of "contest personnel" as long as:

  1. the host school retains the score table crew and line judges

  2. we have time before the varsity warm-ups should start (for a 5:30 start time, play until 6:30 so you can start the 7:00 varsity warmups/captains meeting on time).

  3. the official has been made aware that both teams would like to play the 3rd set with whatever time remains (ASK BOTH TEAMS AT THE CAPT/COACHES MEETING)

If all 3 criteria are met, then we're good to go and we are happy to support the sub-varsity level players getting some additional playing time.


September 1 Reminder

Coaches are tasked with submitting a lineup prior to each set listing the uniform numbers for the six starting players in the proper serving order.

Serving order does not mean the same thing as position order.

While the serving team's first server will start in Position 1 (right-back), the receiving team's first server needs to rotate before serving, so they will start in Position 2 (right-front).

Officials must understand this or they run a high risk of telling teams to line up improperly which will cause an even bigger problem as soon as the receiving team rotates to serve.

Be sure you understand how this process works. If you don't, then ask your partner and review the case book/officials manual to learn more.

No Jewelry

August 31 Reminder

Jewelry is NOT allowed in NFHS play.

While USAV and NCAA are allowing various kinds of jewelry to be worn by players, NFHS is not.

During your captain's meeting, please ask coaches if "everyone is legally equipped according to the high school league rules" and remind everyone that earrings/jewelry needs to be removed at that time.

Putting tape on earrings does not make them legal.