Bendigo teenager named athlete of the year

TALENTED GROUP: The Bendigo Bank Academy of Sport's volleyball squad before Friday night's awards presentation. Pictures: JODIE DONNELLAN

TALENTED GROUP: The Bendigo Bank Academy of Sport's volleyball squad before Friday night's awards presentation. Pictures: JODIE DONNELLAN

PICTURES: Bendigo Bank Academy of Sport awards night

VOLLEYBALLER James Haythorne has been crowned the Bendigo Bank Academy of Sport Athlete of the Year award.

Haythorne was presented with the Gary Tierney Memorial Scholarship award at a gala ceremony on Friday night.

Gary Tierney was a respected local business person who was chair of the Academy of Sport for many years. 

Tierney past away in 2009. 

The Bendigo teen was a part of the Australian Junior Volleyball team and was a gold medal winner at the Australian Junior Volleyball Championships in 2013.

Earlier this year, Haythorne was invited to travel to Thailand for an Australian Youth training camp. 

The 17-year-old is hoping to book a spot at the Asian Youth Volleyball Championships in Sri Lanka in September. 

Cycling coach Ken Maddern was also awarded the Academy Coach of the Year.

Maddern has coached the cycling squad since 2010 and has also been heavily involved in the Castlemaine Cycling Club.

As part of his coaching role with the academy, Maddern offers youngsters with insightful knowledge of specific training programs as well as tactics and tips on preparation.

The Frank Roberts outstanding service award was presented to golf manager Mark Bamford.

Australian winter Olympian David Morris was the guest speaker for the presentation night.

Morris, an aerial skier, won a silver medal at the Sochi games earlier this year.

State Minister for Sport and Recreation Damian Drum was also among the special guests for the evening's celebrations. 

The Bendigo Academy of Sport covers the Loddon, Campaspe, greater Bendigo, Mount Alexander and Macedon Shire regions.

Award winners included:

Baseball

Athlete of the Year: Lachlan Jack

Coaches Encouragement: Charlie Hay

Cycling

Athlete of the Year: Stephen Damm

Coaches Encouragement: Clare Cook

Football

Athlete of the Year: Peter Marziano and Jenna Lawson

Coaches Encouragement: Alex Caldow and Tayla Vlaeminck

Golf

Athlete of the Year: Tahlia Holmberg

Coaches Encouragement: Kurtis Lynch

Netball

Athlete of the Year: Abbey Ryan

Coaches Encouragement: Chelsea Sartori

Tennis

Athlete of the Year: Erik Holt-Crossman

Coaches Encouragement: Nicholas Guttuso

Volleyball

Athlete of the Year: Lydia Rhule and James Haythorne

Coaches Encouragement: Matilda Roberts and Michael Mayes

BIG YEAR: Netballers Bridget Murray and Toni Burns have developed many skills.

BIG YEAR: Netballers Bridget Murray and Toni Burns have developed many skills.

INSPIRING WORDS: Chairwoman of the BBAS board Margaret Keech.

INSPIRING WORDS: Chairwoman of the BBAS board Margaret Keech.

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