Rebecca Guglielmino has tried her hand at a lot of sports, but it wasn't until this year that she felt at home on the field.
She arrived at the Thurgoona Bulldogs by way of the Albury-Wodonga Lady Bandits, Wodonga Wolves and Ovens and Murray netball – but football has always been her passion.
Gugliemino won the best and fairest for the AFL North-East Border open women's competition on Sunday night, the first winner in the league's first season.
Though she arrived on the Border as a basketballer, she said it is on the footy field that she feels most at home.
"It's my first year playing, but I'd always played as a kid with school footy and stuff, in the backyard at home,” she said.
“I gave netball a crack but I wasn’t much of a fan.
“I've played a lot of basketball, but I think footy is better- it's like basketball but with tackling.”
Guglielmino beat out Yarrawonga's Malory Nankervis (15 votes) and Bulldogs teammate Alyce Parker (12) for the best and fairest.
Having spent most of the season as part of a star-studded midfield, Guglielmino said the decision to play this season had been well worth it.
“I was pretty lucky, I had a really good team around me,” she said.
“I had Alyce Parker and Iilish Ross in there with me, I think if they'd played most of the season they would have pipped me.
“When the AFLW started I was spewing because there wasn't a way to play locally.
“They had a few trials and I made sure to get around those.”
The skilled midfielder said the competition had a bright future ahead of it.
“It's been really exciting, a few teams have been short on numbers but people have been happy to fill in,” she said.
‘Those numbers are only going to improve though.
“My advice is to just have a crack, I've tried pretty much every sport, but footy is by far my favourite.
“Straight off the bat there's 18 other girls who are your friends straightaway.
“That camaraderie is the best part of playing.”
Thurgoona will face the Wodonga Raiders in the grand final on Sunday from 12.45pm, at Birallee Park.
The Youth Girls grand final starts at 11am, with the Murray Felines set to face Lavington.
AFL NEB OPEN WOMEN'S BEST & FAIREST
- Rebecca Guglielmino, Thurgoona (16 votes)
- Malory Nankervis (Yarrawonga (15)
- Alyce Parker, Thurgoona (12)
- Jenna Mercer, Wodonga Raiders (11)
- Karina Collins (Thurgoona), Molly Giggins (Yarrawonga), Ally Williams (Alpine Lions) 10
AFL NEB YOUTH GIRLS BEST & FAIREST
- Leela Rosser (Murray Felines), 17
- Meg Todhunter (Wodonga Raiders), 16
- Emily Nicholson (Murray Felines), Lily Owen (Lavington), 15
- Molly Campbell (Alpine Lions) 14