SHOT put champion Emma Berg and gun sprinter Kye Mason were joint winners of the H.H. Hunter Memorial Athlete of the Year for Athletics Bendigo Region in 2021-22 season.
The top athletes starred at the recently-run national track and field championships in Sydney.
It was the third time Berg had won the Gill Family-sponsored award, and a first for Mason.
Despite some injuries in the lead-up, Berg achieved a mark of 13.58m to strike gold in the open shot put at the nationals for a second time.
Reigning Victorian and Victorian Country champion, Berg's a key contributor in officiating at AV Shield League and a coach.
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Highs for Mason included a time of 21.89 to claim bronze in the 200m at the Australian University Games run in April, 2021.
The Bendigo record had been held for 38 years.
This year he broke the 200m record again and the Bendigo open 100m and under-20 400m records which had a 38-year span.
A key to the Hawks' success at country titles and AVSL, Mason's best times are 10.72 for 100m, or 10.57 (wind assisted); 21.86 for 200m; and 48.32 in the 400m.
The Alby Jack perpetual trophy for junior male athlete of the year went to Harrison Boyd from Bendigo Harriers.
The teenager starred in 1500m and 3000m events at national and state titles in a year where the Harriers celebrate their 100th anniversary.
At states, Boyd won the under-18 3000m and silver in the 1500m.
Harriers' clubmate Hailey Stubbs regularly broke hammer records on her way to being named the Anne Flack Memorial junior female athlete of the year.
Highs for Hailey included a Bendigo residential record-breaking mark of 44.26m to earn silver in the under-15 hammer at the national titles.
The Geoff Major Rising Star was South Bendigo's young distance running champion Logan Tickell who broke Victoria's under-15 record for the 3000m when he ran 8:48.13 last November on the Box Hill track.
Other nominees for the Rising Star awards were Harrison Boyd, Jesse Gray, Naomi Henderson, Frances Leach, Jordan Mathews, Angus McKindlay, Genevieve Nihill, Kai Norton, Cameron Smith, Sophie Scoble, Hailey Stubbs, and Chelsea Tickell.
A quality field was in the running for the Neil Macdonald veterans award.
Distance running champion Jill Wilkie from Harriers earned the title.
Other nominees were clubmates Brett Gilligan and Geoff Shaw; Eaglehawk's Helen Anderson and Kath Heagney; South Bendigo's Jayne Norton; and Nathan Crowley from University.
The Allen Stuchbery aggregate awards were based on points across the four grand prix disciplines in
Athletics Victoria Shield League.
Bendigo Harriers' veteran Geoff Shaw led the men's aggregate from Eaglehawk young guns Cameron Smith and William Beaton.
Leader in the women's aggregate was South Bendigo multi-talented veteran Carol Coad from Eaglehawk rising star Jorja Morrison and South Bendigo veteran Joan Self.
The AWD award went to Eaglehawk's Tim Sullivan a three-time Paralympian, winner of 10 gold medals at the Games, who continues to excel in the sprint events, and also takes on shot put.
Grand prix points were earned in throws, sprints, jumps, and distance run and/or walks.
Points from AVSL determined the grand prix placings.
Hilson Builders throws GP: Jake Gavriliadis, Olivia Graham, Craig Graham.
Intersport Bicknells sprints GP: Cameron Smith, Belle Guillou, Allie Guillou.
Purtill's Nursery distance run/walk GP: Jennifer Payne, Anne Buckley, Debbie Kirne.
Eaglehawk Floral Botique jumps GP: Geoff Shaw, Naomi Henderson, Jordan Mathews.
Winners of the Jack Davey 5000m championship were Nigel Preston and Anne Buckley, while Aaron Norton and Alice Wilkinson took out the Leigh Purtill 10,000m titles.
The Charlie Nolan perpetual trophy for male official of the year was awarded to David Long.
Leading female contributor was Andrea Smith, a newcomer to the photo finish team led by Laurie Preston and Peter Hayes.
Special achievements across 2021-22 included the success of the Bendigo Bats in Athletics Victoria's cross-country series; Eaglehawk being country champions for the fifth year in a row and second in AVSL premier division.
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