BENDIGO Pioneers captain Jacob Chisari joined some of football's biggest names on Sunday night when he figured in a four-way tie for the Morrish Medal as best and fairest in the AFL Victoria TAC Cup under-18s competition.
Chisari, Eastern Ranges’ Ben Cavarra, Geelong Falcons’ George Cameron and Gippsland Power’s Josh Scott were all locked on 16 votes after the final card was called at Etihad Stadium.
The gun onballer from South Mildura earned votes in eight matches, the most of any player.
Chisari's win is the Bendigo Pioneers first Morrish Medal success since Golden Square's Nathan Brown won the medal in 1996.
Sunday night's count was the most dramatic in years.
A best afield performance in Bendigo's round 15 clash with Murray Bushrangers put Chisari on 14 votes.
Chisari added his sixth two-vote game in the next round to climb to top of the leaderboard.
In the final round of the season, Chisari represented Bendigo Gold in the VFL, and Scott did not play.
The Bendigo rover played in the most games of the quartet – 15 – while Cameron played 14 and Cavarra and Scott 13.
Cameron, Chisari and Scott all played in the VFL during the season.
Bendigo Pioneers coach David Newett and regional manager Ray Byrne were ecstatic about Chisari's medal win.
"Jacob had an outstanding season with us. He was a brilliant leader, and the medal caps two years of hard work.
"He relocated from Mildura to study at Bendigo Senior Secondary College and give himself the best chance to improve his football with the Pioneers," said Newett.
Chisari's first year in TAC Cup was capped by winning the Neville Strauch Medal as Pioneers club champion.
"Jacob has worked so hard to keep getting better every game he plays," Newett said.
.The medal winner's parents, Frank and Wendy and younger brother Matthew were at the Morrish Medal vote count.
"Their support for Jacob is incredible," Newett said.
The disappointment at not being selected in Victoria Country's team for the AFL national under-18 titles became a motivatiing factor for Chisari as the season rolled on.