Groton has a long tradition of extremely strong boys tennis and competes in the Independent School League, arguably the strongest league in New England. Since the early sixties, Groton has had only three head coaches: Richard “Doc” Irons, who coached tennis in the sixties and seventies and for whom the ISL championship trophy is named; David Bannard, who was head coach in the seventies and early eighties; and now John Conner, who was been head coach since 1981.
The squad is often in the hunt for honors in the league. Blessed with ten outdoor courts and eight indoor courts, Groton's facilities are among the best around. Working hard, setting high goals, and exhibiting the finest sportsmanship are trademarks of the Groton School tennis experience.
Dean of Faculty John Conner arrived at Groton School in 1981, beginning a long career as Spanish teacher and tennis coach—and guiding a team that has been a perennial powerhouse in the Independent School League.
Known as Señor, Coach Conner received his MA in Spanish language and linguistics from the University of Wisconsin a few years after a backpacking adventure throughout Europe, where he fell in love with Spain, its language, people, and culture. Sr. Conner holds the E. Roland Harriman Chair at Groton.
Señor Conner played varsity tennis (as well as squash) at Amherst College and worked at Tamarack Tennis Camp in Franconia, New Hampshire for many summers, co-directing the camp for several years.