Softball Season Information with Updates

Dates & Guidelines
The following dates and guidelines are approved for the 2019-20 school year.

  • First practice: Monday, May 4-Change of dates for 2020.
  • First game: Monday, May 25
  • Playing dates: 40 games
  • Scrimmages: 3
  • Regional Tournament Dates:
    Class 1A and 2A:July 6, 8, 10, 13
  • Class 3A:July  7, 9, 13--Change of dates for 2020
  • Class 4A and 5A: July 9, 11, 14
  • State Tournament: July 20-24 in Fort Dodge for all classes
  • Official tournament ball: Dudley SB 12L RF Y FP — Red stitch (.47 COR)
  • QuikStats reporting dates:QuikStats will be checked every Tuesday during the regular season

Individual and Team Limitations
Pitchers and catchers may voluntarily practice pitching under a coach’s supervision at any time during the year using equipment required for their positions only (balls, gloves, pitching rubbers, mounds, plates and catcher’s equipment. No bats, helmets or pitching machines are allowed.)  Catchers are not allowed to practice specific drills or receive instruction related to catching and are present for the sole purpose of catching the pitcher(s).

A team is permitted to play no more than three games in any single day. Tournaments may include no more than 16 teams. No more than four games per team may be played in any tournament. A school may play in only one tournament at a time and play no more than three games on a calendar day. No junior varsity teams are allowed in varsity tournaments except in emergency situations (must be approved by the IGHSAU).

Eighth grade students are eligible to practice (including scrimmages) with the high school team on May 4 and compete on May 25. Eighth graders may compete on the junior high team, high school team or both. If competing in junior high and high school, they may play in only three games on a calendar day. Their season limitation is 65 total games. 5Sixth graders may participate (practice or play) on the junior high team on the first day of practice, as set by the school district.  THIS IS NEW FOR 2020.

Individuals may play a maximum of 65 games and play in only three games per day (includes all levels of play).  EXCEPTION:  A varsity player who enters the game only as a courtesy runner and serves only in that capacity for the entire game shall not be charged a game played toward the three-game daily limitation.  If she enters the game in any other capacity (i.e. pinch hitter, pinch runner, or defensive player), the game counts and she is subject to the three-game daily limit.  This exception applies only to the varsity level player and is intentionally narrow in scope.  The intent is to allow younger players to fully participate at lower levels and still be available for this limited varsity role without reaching the three-game limit.  This exception for the three-game daily limit is new for 2020.

All levels of play (7-12) will pitch from 43-feet. Follow all NFHS pitching rules.  The previous adaptation that required the non-pivot foot be in contact with the pitching plate is no longer valid.  THIS IS NEW FOR 2020.

INTERNATIONAL TIE-BREAKER - When used in a regular season game, the international tie-breaker rule starts in the top of the 8th inning. To apply the rule, determine the first legal batter of the inning, and then place the player immediately preceding her in the line-up on second base with no outs. If used during a regular season tournament, it is permissible to begin using the international tie-breaker rule prior to the 8th inning if the time limit has expired. The use of the International tiebreaker in regular season games or tournaments must be decided prior to the start of the game (i.e. following conference or tournament rules).

NEW FOR 2020 — the international tie-breaker is not used during regional tournament play but is used in the all consolation games at the state tournament beginning in the top of the 8th inning. There are no longer time limits for the consolation games at the state tournament.

All regular season games must be legal games, per NFHS rules.  This includes any games played in tournaments.  For schools hosting tournaments and are now preparing tournament information for the participating teams, please provide written communicate on the game-ending procedures for the tournament, particularly when there is a time limit and/or weather delays.  Those procedures should also be shared with umpires and discussed at the pre-game conference with coaches during the tournament.

The schedule at state softball in Ft. Dodge remains the same as last year with the exception of new start times for the championship games and the 3rd/4th play consolation games.

Thursday, July 23
1A Championship                4:45 p.m.                   Consolation   3:45 p.m.
2A Championship                7:00 p.m.                   Consolation   6:00 p.m.

 Friday, July 24
3A Championship                2:30 p.m.                   Consolation   1:30 p.m.
4A Championship                4:45 p.m.                   Consolation   3:45 p.m.
5A Championship                7:00 p.m.                   Consolation   6:00 p.m.