TWO teenagers who led the way during a challenging season for Port Fairy finished one-two in the club's best and fairest count.
Tessa Allen (winner) and Maddie Green (runner-up) were shining lights for the Renae Taylor-coached team during a winless Hampden league netball season.
Allen - the league's rising star winner - was influential in centre, playing every game, while Green was a powerhouse in defence before injuring her knee.
The duo, along with Camperdown's Chelsea Baker and Mary Place and Koroit's Millie Jennings, were among the younger cohort to podium in their clubs' best and fairest awards in 2022.
Taylor said Allen's performances belied her years.
"Her growth was enormous from the start of the year to the end of the year, especially for a player who is 18," she said.
"She played with multiple different combinations around her due to team members not being available and she was highly consistent and that's why we saw her at league level getting a high amount of votes in the MVP award because she was a standout for us all year."
Taylor said Allen, who will start a university degree in Geelong next year, became an on-court leader.
"I think she worked a bit more on the defensive side of her game this year and being a centre player that's obviously equally as important as your attacking skills," she said.
"I think defensively she got stronger and stronger as the year went on and she really mixed it with the better players in the league."
Embracing the challenge of playing in an unsettled team - Taylor had 22 players rotate throughout the seven-player side throughout the season as injuries and unavailability threw curve-ball after curve-ball at the Seagulls - helped Allen elevate her game too.
"I think she should be really proud of what she's done in a team where she's had to become a leader very young," Taylor said.
"For some people the pressure can be difficult with that but she just thrived and took it all in her stride."
Green - an emerging cricketer whose priority is the summer sport - was restricted to half the season due to a knee injury.
Taylor said it made the year 12 student's runner-up finish even more impressive.
"I don't think we even got to see Maddie at her best," she said.
"She was still a force in defence for us, especially as someone who had just come out of juniors.
"It was just unfortunate she hurt her knee, I think in round eight or nine, and didn't get to play for the rest of the season which hurt us a lot as a team."
Jennings - still eligible for 17 and under competition impressed for the Saints, who made a preliminary final.
The teenager filled a variety of roles for Koroit and was a beacon of consistency.
Jennings was part of the Western Region 17 and under team which played at the state championships at the weekend.
Camperdown: Winner - Chelsea Baker; runner-up - Mary Place
Cobden: Winner - Remeny McCann; runner-up - Molly Hutt
Hamilton: Winners - Kellie and Emma Sommerville; runner-up - Hayley Sherlock
Koroit: Winner - Millie Jennings; runner-up - Kasey Barling
Port Fairy: Winner - Tessa Allen; runner-up - Maddie Green
Portland: Winner - Heidi Jones; runner-up - Remy Grant
South Warrnambool: Winner - Isabella Rea; runner-up - Carly Watson
North Warrnambool: Winner - Skye Billings; runner-up - Maddy Vardy
Terang Mortlake: Winner - Aimee Moloney; runner-up - Jacqui Arundell
Warrnambool: Winner - Amy Wormald; runner-up - Matilda Fitzgerald
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