Whitehead wins Swifts best and fairest

HDFL - The accolades for Ricky Whitehead just keep on coming, with the classy onballer taking out Swifts club best and fairest for season 2012.

It was a runaway victory for Whitehead, who also claimed Horsham District Football League's Dellar Medal last month.

Whitehead polled a stunning 55 votes to claim top honours ahead of Brett Hargreaves on 30.

After not completing a pre-season, Whitehead had a slow start to 2012 and got back on track after a frank talk with Swifts coach Paul Hanns and president Robert Carey.

From there he slowly began to find his rhythm, moving up from the forward line into the middle where he excelled.

Whitehead also still managed to kick 31 goals for the season, including two in Swifts preliminary final loss to Edenhope-Apsley.

He has signed on with the Baggies again for season 2013 and will be play a pivotal role as they look to go one step further.

Teammate and runner up, Brett Hargreaves had a stellar year thanks to a masterstroke set by Baggies coach Hanns.

Normally Swifts premier ruckman, Hargreaves (who won last year's Baggies best and fairest) was thrust down into the full-forward position in the absence of Julian Carr and Jeremy Joiner.

Hargreaves relished the challenge set and went on to boot 48 goals for the season, averaging two a game to win the Baggies leading goal kicker award.

Highlights of his season included nine goals booted against highly-fancied opponents, Rupanyup, in round 13 and two bags of eight against Noradjuha Quantong and Natimuk in rounds 10 and 15.

Rising star went to defender Aaron Cooper and Damon Folkes took home best first year player honours.

Most consistent went to Owen Phillips, who was also honoured with a life membership to the club.

Jacob Hamilton and Brett Hargreaves received awards for 50 games, Scott Carey (100) and club stalwarts Phillips and Jamie Britten were recognised for playing 200 games.

In the Swifts reserves vote count, top honours went to Brad Winton.

Winton was a deserving winner, finishing with 26 votes and stepped up to play five senior matches.

Mark StClair finished reserves runner up on 21 votes, edging Damian Ball into third with 20.

Andrew Cameron took home reserves goal kicking award, Nick Considine was rising star winner and most consistent went to Damian Ball.

Jordan Ralph was named best first year reserves player and the coaches award was awarded to Ben Hodgetts.

Wes Oosthuizen was honoured for playing 100 reserves matches.

Josh Newton capped off a fine season by taking home Swifts under 17s best and fairest award.

Newton topped the vote count with 52 votes, finishing 13 votes ahead of Alex Ross on 39.

Other awards went to Alex Close (leading goalkicker), Lachlan Hamilton (rising star), Nick Raack (best first year) and Hayden Thompson (most consistent).

The under 17s coaches award was shared between Gary Martin and Liam Scott.

Martin, Scott and Hayden Thompson were recognised for 50 games, while Ryan Folkes and Josh Newton notched up 100 games for the Baggies.

Ben Taylor stormed home to win the Baggies under 14s best and fairest.

Taylor was rewarded for a sensational season, polling an impressive 85 votes while Luke Thompson finished runner up on 49.

Samuel Raack was Baggies leading goal kicker, rising star went to Seth Blake, best first year player was Kristan Haebick and the coaches award was given to Paul Enriques.

Paul and B-Jay Enriques were honoured for playing 50 games for Swifts.

Ricky Whitehead with his trophies after winning the Swifts Football Club's senior best and fairest award for 2012.

Ricky Whitehead with his trophies after winning the Swifts Football Club's senior best and fairest award for 2012.


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