Three votes in the last match of the season between University Blacks and St Kevin’s capped off a stunning 2017 Woodrow Medal count with Bede Mahon saluting on the VAFA’s night of nights at Crown’s River Room.
Sitting equal-first with Mitch Brown (SKOB), Ross Young (Blues) and an ineligible Matt Thomas (OMs) on 14 votes at the end of Round 17, Mahon polled the maximum in the Blacks’ loss to SKOB to win the award three votes clear.
The Blacks’ skipper took five rounds to poll his first lot of votes with a best-on-ground performance against St Bedes/Mentone Tigers in Round 5 before going quiet again until Round 9. However, the star midfielder stormed home with nine votes in the last four rounds, drawing level with a three-vote performance in Round 17 and repeating the effort in the final match of the season.
Brown, Young and Thomas each sat equal-second on 14 votes, while Lachlan Ferguson (Coll) and Jason Tutt (DLS) were equal-fifth on 12. Ferguson led the count after polling maximum votes four times in the first 10 rounds but injury curtailed the remainder of his home and away season.
SKOB and Blues boast the highest number of vote-getters with 16 each, one ahead of Old Xaverians.
Mahon is the first University Blacks player to win the coveted award since H.A. Meredith in 1952.