Reaper wins dramatic duel to be Gisborne’s club champion
by Nathan Dole
JUST one vote separated Jack Reaper and Ethan Minns after the final card was called in Gisborne Football Netball Club’s senior best and fairest award for the 2018 season.
Reaper’s superb form at centre half-back for the Bulldogs earned a tally of 54 votes as Minns was runner-up on 53.
Classy on-baller Matt Goodyear scored 46 votes as ruckman Josh Grabham, 44, and defender Heath Simpson, 34, polled well.
The Clinton Young-coached Bulldogs had a great year in which they were beaten in a high-class elimination final by Sandhurst.
Highs for the Bulldogs in the Bendigo Bank Football Netball League’s seniors competition included wins on home turf at Gardiner Reserve against Eaglehawk and Golden Square.
After five rounds, Gisborne had a win-loss tally of 1-4, but fought back brilliantly to be 11-7 at the end of the home and away series.
On the netball court, goal defence Maddy Stewart was the A-grade best and fairest.
Stewart achieved a breakthrough victory in the Betty Thompson Medal to be the Bendigo FNL’s fairest and best, and played a key role in the team’s run to the grand final where Sandhurst won in extra time.
Top three in Gisborne’s A-grade team champion were Stewart, 43 votes; Keara Fitzgerald, 29; and goaler Ella Bertachinni on 28.
Rylee Connell added the A-reserve medal to her league medal victory.
Other award winners at Gisborne FNC for 2018:
Reserves football – best and fairest: Hayden Doricic; runner-up: Darcy Challis.
Under-18s football – best and fairest: Ben Eales; runners-up: Jack Ozanne, Jacob Murphy, Seb Bell-Bartels, Matt McDonald.
Women’s football – best and fairest: Jessica D’Antonio; runner-up Briana Woodburn.
A-reserve netball – best and fairest: Rylee Connell (also league medal winner); runner-up: Stacey Luke.
B-grade netball – best and fairest: Sophia Davies; runner-up: Emily Wilson.
B-reserve netball – best and fairest: Jayde Kirkham; runner-up: Zoe Southall.
17-and-under netball – best and fairest: Tazma Morris; runner-up: Charlotte Crook.