SPRINGFIELD, Ore. - The clock ran out.
The score was 3 to 4.
And Jim Perry was the only player still standing for “The Dodgefathers” team on opening night of Playground Sports dodgeball league at the Willamalane Center in Springfield Tuesday night.
“Nobody’s good, it’s just for fun,” Perry said, smiling and showing off his broken glasses from the game.
About 50 people have registered for dodgeball teams. Bec Williams, the creator and director of Playground Sports, said there is still space for free agents.
“Our goal is for every participant to get their friends to join,” she said.
Williams runs dodgeball, kickball, basketball, bowling, soccer and volleyball leagues throughout the year.
In 2008, she started Playground Sports when the recession hit. She helped generate income for Willamalane by regularly renting their gym space.
Williams has been an athlete since high school and plays in all of the sports from time to time.
When a match ended Tuesday, Williams ran out to high-five each member of the two teams.
Willliams pointed to the “Real Dodgey” team that was taking a break between matches.
“Look, they just got hit by balls, and they’re all smiling,” she said. “I just want people to have a ball.”
Dodgeball teams have 6 to 16 people, ages 18 and up.
Playground Sports rents a basketball court and divides it so two games run at the same time.
At the start of each round, six balls are placed in the middle of the court.
When the whistle blows, players run to the balls.
Dodgeballs fly through the air as players continuously get knocked out and come back in when a teammate catches a ball in midair.
When a team knocks all the opposing players out, they earned a point.
This fast-paced play continued for 15 minutes as players from other teams referee.
Dan Adams, 27, heard about the league from friends. He is now on a team with friends and Symantec co-workers. He enjoys the exercise and competition the weekly games bring.
“It’s the perfect mix of chill and competitive,” Adams said.
The night ends with team high-fives and a water break as players celebrate a successful first night of dodgeball.
At the end of a season, players 21 and over attend a party hosted by Ninkasi Brewing Company, who sponsors Playground Sports.
For dodgeball, the party is at Sonny’s Tavern in Springfield, which gives discounted prices to ball players.
Raffle tickets are also awarded to winning teams and prizes, including Playground Sports and Ninkasi gear, are raffled off.
The fall dodgeball league continues Tuesday nights through November 12.
Contact Bec Williams at email@example.com for more information.
The league costs $305 per team or $40 as a free agent. More information can be found at playgroundsports.net
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