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Amaris Pozeg

Head Coach, Women’s Cloth

I am a highschool physical education teacher in Hamilton Ontario working at HSC (Hillfield Strathallan College) for the past 18 years. I coach field hockey and rugby sevens at the high school level and have had the honour of being a part of several CISSA championship teams. I run Play Hamilton, a recreational league for adults and kids focusing on inclusivity and “out of the box” sports like dodgeball and tchoukball.

I grew up in Hamilton Ontario with a passion for all sports but especially soccer playing for local clubs Mount Hamilton and Dundas United. In high school I stumbled into the sport of Field Hockey and my soccer skills landed me in the goalie position. Little did I know this move would frame my varsity career. I moved up in the sport playing provincially and made the Junior National training camp. University of Toronto, one of the top ranked teams in Canada, scouted me and I played 5 years both indoor and outdoor field hockey winning several CIS medals and playing at my highest level of sport. After university I hung up my stick, and on a whim started playing rugby for the Toronto Scottish. It was at this time, fresh out of university, I began coaching rugby and field hockey back in my home town at HSC. In the pursuit of a career in education, I traveled to New Zealand for teachers college and while I was there played rugby. It was one fateful night in New Zealand that I watched the dodgeball movie and vowed to start a league when I got back to Canada.

Upon return to Canada in 2004 I worked for a small credit based private school that had a gym the size of one volleyball court in the back. They asked me to come up with ideas for revenue and it was here that I started my dream creating EDH (Extreme Dodgeball Hamilton). I mustered my friends, family and a handful of community members and with just 6 teams started season 1. I got rules from the then canceled Extreme dodgeball show on ESPN the OCHO and from there developed a fast paced 3 ball cloth game. Season one was a success, and I was immediately pressed to start the next…each season more and more, mostly by word of mouth, people came out leading eventually to 126 teams, and 3000+ members, over 10 years. The game developed as well, focusing on keeping a fast paced game, allowing teams to earn a player back in not only on a catch but a hit as well…a rule affectionately known in the dodgeball world as the “Hamilton rule”. This kept wait times in jail to an all time low and players simply got to play more.

In 2015 EDH celebrated its 10 year anniversary, receiving recognition from the city of Hamilton and being honored by the newly formed Dodgeball Canada as the biggest dodgeball league in North America. 2017 I started Play Hamilton and the league adopted the international 5 ball game (cloth), maintaining rules to allow for maximum play at a recreational level. Play Hamilton proudly runs a 5 ball cloth dodgeball league for kids, co-ed and women’s and is home to one of Canada’s few Tchoukball leagues. We are now striving to rebuild after pandemic shut downs with a commitment to seeing more and more people get out and play.

In 2019 I was selected to represent Canada on the national women’s team for cloth dodgeball. Despite suffering injury late in the game I and played in the America’s cup where the women’s team qualified for the world cup. Dodgeball has been an integral part of my life for the past 18 years, in my opinion it is the ultimate sport championing transferable sports like no other:throw, catch, move. It is a sport for all and belongs on a world scene with olympic dreams. I have seen this sport grow from its infancy and I believe Canada has a place on that world stage and I am looking forward to being a part of that epic journey not only for Canada for the sport as a whole.

Amaris Pozeg
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