Superstar GIANT Alyce Parker has continued to add honours to her short but glittering career, winning back-to-back Gabrielle Trainor Medals as club champion.
The two-time All Australian from Holbrook in southern NSW - in just her third season in the competition - led the count from start to finish and polled the highest amount of votes in club history, under the current voting system.
Parker becomes the first dual winner of the Gabrielle Trainor Medal and finished ahead of 2019 winner Rebecca Beeson and Irishwoman - and the oldest player in the competition - Cora Staunton.
The 20-year-old finished equal second in the league Best and Fairest with the equal-highest average disposals for the league with 23.9 a game, whilst also averaging 5.6 clearances and 5.1 tackles to further enhance her reputation as one of the competition’s best.
Coach Alan McConnell paid tribute to Parker’s stellar season.
“This is just another well-deserved award for Alyce,” McConnell said.
“She’d had an outstanding start to her short career but the best thing is that she also has the drive and determination to want to continue to improve every single season.
“Alyce has taken her game on the field to another level this season but she’s also continued to improve as a leader of our football club off the field and we expect that to only continue in the years to come.”
Chairman Tony Shepherd congratulated Parker and spoke about the resilience of the club’s AFLW program.
“The past 12 months has seen our group confront some enormous challenges and the resilience and strength the players and staff have shown has been incredible,” Mr Shepherd said.
“We’re so proud of this group and the performances they put out on field even after being the only team to have to relocate to get the 2021 season away.
“I congratulate Alyce on behalf of the entire club on her outstanding season. She continues to be an amazing role model for aspiring footballers across NSW and the ACT and we’re so proud she’s a GIANT.
“I’d like to also thank Harvey Norman, Kia and Facilities First for their ongoing support of our program, particularly through the challenging times the industry has faced recently.
“Harvey Norman has led the way in their support of women’s sport and it’s through their strong relationship with our women’s program, that has seen them continue to increase their investment in our club.
“Everyone involved in our AFLW program should be incredibly proud of the 2021 season as we look to bigger and better things in 2022.”
In the other awards, second-year player Georgia Garnett was named the Rising Star after making her debut in round three this year and cementing herself as an important part of the backline, playing every game for the rest of the season.
The Castle Hill product also took home the Community Award for her involvement with community visits to local clubs across the region.
Parker also took home the Members Choice Award for the second season in a row while Rebecca Privitelli won back-to-back Marks of the Year for her effort in the wet in round seven while Haneen Zreika was awarded Goal of the Year for a brilliant snap in round eight.
Staunton won the Leading Goal Kicker for the second season in a row while Britt Tully won the Coaches Award for the third time in five years.
In 2021, the GIANTS have introduced the inaugural Jacinda Barclay Fearless Award. Judged by the players each round, this award recognises a player in each game that lives the team’s values and plays in a selfless and fearless fashion.
The annual award is presented to the player who polls the most votes across the season. Presented by Barclay’s mother Deb at Thursday night’s event, young gun Tait Mackrill won the first-ever award.
The Gabrielle Trainor Medal is voted on by Head Coach Alan McConnell and his assistant coaches, who can award votes to players as they see fit on a scale of one to four with a maximum of 16 votes in a round.
The votes from across the season are then tallied up with the player with the most votes being crowned the Gabrielle Trainor Medallist.
2021 Gabrielle Trainor Medal Top 10
1. Alyce Parker (94)
2. Rebecca Beeson (67)
3. Cora Staunton (55)
4. Elle Bennetts (50)
5. Alicia Eva (43)
6. Tanya Hetherington
7. Georgia Garnett (29)
Pepa Randall (29)
9. Britt Tully (22)
10. Emily Goodsir (20)
2021 Rising Star Award, presented by Kia
2021 GIANTS Community Award, presented by the GIANTS Foundation
2021 AFL Women’s Members Choice Award, presented by Harvey Norman
2021 Mark of the Year, presented by Harvey Norman
2021 Goal of the Year, presented by Kia
2021 Leading Goal Kicker
Cora Staunton (10 goals)
2021 Jacinda Barclay Fearless Award
2021 Coaches Award, presented by Facilities First