The Murray Bushrangers girls wrapped up the 2021 NAB League season on a high with an impressive 32-point win against Sandringham Dragons at W.J. Findlay Oval yesterday.
It was without question the Bushrangers' best performance of the campaign as they controlled the game from the outset to record a 9.11 (65) to 5.3 (33) victory.
Keeley Skepper capped off a consistent season with a best on ground display in the midfield, while Ally Morphett was influential in the ruck.
Olivia Cicolini and Sophia McCarthy finished with three goals apiece, with singles to Skepper, Tayissa Gray and Cassidy Mailer.
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Bushrangers coach Mark Brown said it was bittersweet for the season to come to an end after a complete performance from his side.
"It would have been nice to be playing that brand of football all season, we understand there's reasons the girls weren't, but to see them produce that sort of performance in the last game of the year was a little bittersweet because they proved their best is very good," he said.
"We had three wins in our last six, so to split our last six games is really pleasing.
"I think Sandringham had nine girls who were in the Vic Metro side in their squad, so to beat them fairly comfortably today was really pleasing for the girls and it reinforces the work we've done and the faith we have in them.
"We were always confident once we got a bit of time and continuity into the girls that their football would improve and it has."
Meanwhile, Shepparton United's Aurora Smith won the Daisy Pearce Medal as the Bushrangers' under-19 girls best and fairest for 2021.
Smith had an outstanding year and featured among the best players in the recent AFLW under-19 national carnival for Vic Country.
She played on the wing and through the midfield for the Bushrangers, where her speed and ball winning ability caught the attention of the Vic Country selectors and AFLW recruiters.
Skepper was runner-up.
The Barnawartha export achieved the rare feat of representing Vic Country in both the under-17 and under-19 national carnivals.
Her ability to cover the ground as a midfielder and elite kicking stood out in the under-17 Vic Country clash against Vic Metro where she was named Vic Country's best player.
Matilda Lyons (under-16 award), Zara Hamilton (coaches award), Lily Kozuharoff (trainer's award) and Kristy Whitehead (Brian Hill award) were also recognised for strong seasons.
The Bushrangers honoured long-standing volunteer Brian Hill with a trophy in his name.
Since the formation of the Bushrangers' girls team in 2016, Hill has volunteered in the role of team manager.
Based in Finley, he has rarely missed a training session or match and aims to make every training session and game day a positive experience for all.
Corryong product Whitehead won the inaugural award for her display of respect, gratitude, empathy, leadership and hard work.
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