The VAFA hosted its first-ever combined awards night at The Pullman East Melbourne yesterday with Ayce Cordy (University Blues) and Imogen Barnett (Old Trinity) taking home the top gongs as the best & fairest players in William Buck Premier.
Cordy became just the fifth player since 1927 to win consecutive Woodrow Medals after polling 23 votes during a season where the Blues claimed the minor premiership. Despite spending more time up forward, the Blues’ captain managed 35 goals for the year, and averaged 42 hit outs and 17 disposals per game. While ranking 4th for hit outs, Cordy followed up his ruck work and managed at least 6 clearances in 11 games while going goalless just twice. He outpolled fellow finalists Marshall Rippon (Uni Blues – 17), Cauley Beetham (Old Xavs – 17), Gus Borthwick (Old Melburnians – 16), Adam Bentick (St Bernard’s – 14) and Nick Pavlou (Old Brighton – 14).
Barnett (28 votes) was instrumental to Trinity’s success throughout the home and away fixture, ranking second in the competition for hit outs, first for marks, third for inside 50’s and averaging 18.2 disposals per game. Despite missing 3 games throughout the middle of the year, Barnett posted 8 matches with at least 16 disposals, 33 hit outs & a goal. Barnett’s fellow finalists on the night included Teresa Zampaglione (Fitzroy-ACU – 20), Ally Hines (SKOB Saints – 17) and Vanessa Murphy (Old Trinity – 14).
Earlier in the night, Hamish Dick (Old Brighton) and Madi Capsalis (Old Mentonians) were crowned the 2019 VAFA Rising Star winners, while Gus Borthwick (Old Melburnians) and Vanessa Murphy (Old Trinity) were named the Premier Coaches MVP’s.
The ceremony showcased the very best talent from all sections of the Association with the previously announced B&F winners from Holmesglen U19’s and the B-D4 men’s and women’s sections presented with the medallions, while the leading goal kickers were also recognised for their outstanding seasons. Of note was St Francis Xavier star Harrison Coe who spoke on behalf of all men’s leading goal kickers after kicking 105 goals in Division 4.
Oliver Murray (Most Promising Umpire) and Matt Oakley (Umpire of the Year) cleaned up the VAFA Umpire Awards, with Oakley having claimed the top prize three times from the past four years.
Woodrow Medal: Ayce Cordy (University Blues)
William Buck Premier Women’s Best & Fairest: Imogen Barnett (Old Trinity)
Premier Men’s Coaches MVP: Gus Borthwick (Old Melburnians)
Premier Women’s Coaches MVP: Vanessa Murphy (Old Trinity)
VAFA Men’s Rising Star: Hamish Dick (Old Brighton)
Anytime Fitness Women’s Rising Star: Madison Capsalis (Old Mentonians)
Most Promising Umpire: Oliver Murray
Umpire of the Year: Matt Oakley