Tahlita Buethke took out the top honour during Saturday night’s Norwood Football Club SANFLW Awards night, being crowned the League side’s Best and Fairest for season 2023.
In just her first season with Norwood after crossing to the club from South Adelaide Buethke was the runaway Best and Fairest winner with 240 votes, ahead of Runner Up Lana Schwerdt on 175 votes.
Buethke averaged 17.5 disposals per game from her 13 matches, and also averaged three marks, four tackles and 1.5 clearances per game.
Her best outing was in Round 7 against Glenelg where she had 25 disposals and kicked one of the goals of the season.
From there she dominated the back half of the season with 20-plus disposal matches on three more occasions.
After Round 8 Buethke had 86 votes and trailed Georgie Jaques on 101 votes, before running away with the medal in a land slide second half of the vote count.
Runner Up Schwerdt also had a consistent season, averaging 17.6 disposals from her 14 matches, as well as five tackles and five clearances per game.
Schwerdt and Buethke were fourth and fifth respectively on the overall League’s disposal tally and both represented South Australia in an U23 game against the State’s U18s.
Schwerdt, Buethke and Tesharna Maher were named in the 2023 SANFLW Team of the Year.
Najwa Allen was Norwood’s SANFLW Leading Goal Kicker with 10 goals from her seven matches, before returning to her Adelaide Crows commitments.
Sarah Branford was awarded the Coaches Award, while Coby Morgan was recognised as the Rising Star and Emily Bartsch the Best First Year Player for the SANFLW side.
NORWOOD DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE
Jazmine Egan took out Norwood’s SANFLW Development League team Best and Fairest Award in what was a very close vote count.
Egan won with 58 votes, ahead of Runner Up Adrienne Davies on 56, Amelia Rusden on 54 and Lili Gambranis on 52.
Kiana Lee was the team’s Leading Goal Kicker with 11 goals (second in the League), while Emily Newton won the Coaches Award.
A CELEBRATION OF NORWOOD’S 2023 SEASON
Following a challenging start to the 2023 Season where Norwood’s SANFLW side was 0-3 after the first three rounds, the team rallied to finish third on the ladder with a 7-5 record.
The team won its first Final by six points against Sturt, but went down to eventual Premiers Central District in the Preliminary Final.
Thirteen players made their SANFLW Debut with Norwood this season, including Courtney Neale, Meghan Gaffney, Georgie Jaques, Emily Bartsch, Georgina Birchall, Elle Lineage, Charli Hazelhurst, Grace Whittaker, Kaitey Whittaker, Sophie Arkun, Kiana Lee (club debut), Buethke (club debut) and Lauren Smith (club debut)
Two players reached 50-game milestones, Alison Ferrall and Tesharna Maher.
Eight players represented their State – Hazelhurst (SA U16 – named All Australian), Molly Brooksby (SA U18 – AFLW National Academy), Coby Morgan (SA U18), Grace Whittaker (Allies/NT U18), Buethke (SA U23), Maher (SA U23), Schwerdt (SA U23), Alana Lishmund (SA U23).
Brooksby was named a SANFLW Powerade Breakthrough Player, and Jaques was drafted by Port Adelaide via the AFLW Supplementary Draft.
The Development League team enjoyed an undefeated minor rounds season, before losing to South Adelaide by seven points in the Grand Final.
All coaches and coaching staff involved in the 2023 season were recognised on Saturday night, as well as outgoing SANFLW Coach Brad Snell and retiring club Captain Alison Ferrall.