Young Phoenix’s rise capped with honour - September 12 2012

Young Phoenix’s rise capped with honour

Damen Francis

September 12 2012

Shepparton News

Kyabram teenage sensation Janna Lawson has been recognised for a series of outstanding performances this season, with the Goulburn North East Football Association open women’s best-and-fairest award.

The 14-year-old did not even manage a full season, after suffering a serious ankle injury while representing Victoria Country mid-season.

However, she recovered and still managed to tally a league-high 25 goals and finish ahead of Shepparton United’s Brittany Patafio and Jacklyn Lombardozzi of Shepparton South in the vote count.

Lawson is already building a solid reputation as a box-to-box midfielder, with the majority of her goals coming not as a forward, but a winger or central midfielder.

Her innate instinct for knowing when to make bursts into the opposition penalty area is a rare gift and difficult to defend against.

That was best demonstrated against Tatura this season, where Lawson scored 12 goals in two games against the Ibises.

It was Lawson’s first full season in the open women’s division, having made only a handful of appearances for the Phoenix last year.

‘‘I can’t really believe it,’’ Lawson said.

‘‘I guess I just have to thank my coaches and my parents.’’

That was not the end of Lawson’s achievements for the evening.

As well as the open women’s best-and-fairest and leading goal-scorer awards, Lawson also won the Golden Boot award in the under-16 girls’ competition, with 22 goals in nine games.

However, she was outpointed by teammate Indre Christy for the league best-and-fairest in that division.

Lawson paid tribute to her teammates for her achievements and said the key to her success was ‘‘hard work’’ and ‘‘determination’’.

Although the season is over for Kyabram’s open women’s team, Lawson still has plenty to look forward to on grand final day, as the Phoenix attempt to defend their under-16 girls’ premiership against Cobram Victory.

‘‘Hopefully we can take the title,’’ Lawson said.

The division two men’s award was won by Kialla United attacker Dhiya Al Mugotir, who also picked up the leading goal-scorer award with 25 goals.


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