Matthew Hanson has become just the second player to win three Werribee best-and-fairest awards by claiming his third consecutive Bruce Montgomery Trophy.
Hanson needed almost every one of his 34 votes to notch up the milestone in what proved to be a thrilling vote count at the club’s Presentation Night at Moonee Valley Racecourse last night, with Ryley Barrack narrowly edged out after polling 32 votes across a breakout season in defence.
Werribee captain Michael Sodomaco finished third in the count, polling 18 votes from just 11 games in what was an injury-interrupted year.
Hanson’s third Bruce Montgomery Trophy comes as yet another accolade in what may well have been his most impressive season at Avalon Airport Oval yet.
Widely regarded as one of the VFL’s premier inside midfielders, the 22-year-old finished third in this year’s JJ Liston Trophy count, was selected for a second straight VFL State Team, and was named as centreman for a third straight VFL Team of the Year after leading the competition for both clearances and tackles this season.
In accepting his award, Hanson echoed a familiar theme for the night, expressing his excitement at the thought of a 2018 season playing for a standalone Werribee out of the club’s new $11.75 million facility at Avalon Airport Oval.
“I’m really honoured to win this award, and I’m really looking forward to next year with the new facilities,” he said.
“It’s a great club to be a part of, and I can’t wait.”
Hanson now stands alongside three-time best-and-fairest winner Travis Robertson, who also claimed his wins in successive years from 2001 to 2003.
While the awarding of the Bruce Montgomery Trophy served as its headline act, the evening provided an opportunity to recognise the efforts of Werribee players and officials across a number of areas.
Nick Larkey took out the other major VFL award as the club’s leading goalkicker, finishing the season with a tally of 21 from his 10 games.
Jack Williams won the final ever best-and-fairest award for the Development League, polling 17 votes after an impressive year in defence to beat home Joe Maishman (11 votes) and Harrison King (nine votes), while Tom Ellard topped the goalkicking with 13.
Among the other players acknowledged on the night were forward Josh Corbett, who took out both the CDC Victoria/Cervus Equipment Community Award and the Trainers’ Award; defender Kurt Aylett, who won the Matchworks Coaches’ Award; and midfielder Dom Brew, who was named the Matchworks Best First-Year Player.
In the off-field department, property steward Nathan Russell was acknowledged for his tireless efforts each week by being named the Ray Smith Best Club Person, while Doug Joiner, Jimmy Masterson, and Peter Williams were all granted the honour of life membership in recognition of their years of outstanding service to the club.
The Werribee Football Club congratulates all its award winners from its 2017 Presentation Night.
CLICK HERE for a full replay of the night.