Why Marissa led Ipswich City's successful charge
FOOTBALL: Proud Ipswich City Bulls coach Ian Carson couldn't find enough words to commend the club's leading performer Marissa Maitland.
He was simply thrilled to see the Bulls central defender rewarded for her incredible efforts in this year's Brisbane Women's Premier League competition.
Maitland won Ipswich City's prestigious Brendan Madden Award at Saturday night's annual presentation night at MiHi Tavern. The award has traditionally been given to a male player.
However, such was Maitland's class and consistent vote-getting that she was the worthy Bulls winner for the 2018 Football Brisbane season.
"It was just one of those stellar years that you have and she just performed week in, week out,'' Carson said.
"She was solid, guided the younger ones around. She was sensational.''
Maitland also collected the Players' Player and Player of the Year honours along with the major award of the night.
"Madden was a passionate man in all his endeavours; a man of courage, strength, tenacity, application, and in his later years battling ill health, a man of incredible endurance,'' Bulls men's head coach Norbert Duga said.
"These traits typified the man who was a founding father of this football club, and despite the many executive roles he performed, he will largely be remembered for his A- Grade managerial stint spanning many years.
"The recipient of this award has produced a fine individual season for our club, and in doing so, has displayed the same courageous, tenacious, and enduring traits which Brendan once portrayed for his beloved Bulls.''
Maitland was chosen to play in the recent BWPL Select squad against Brisbane Roar's W-League team.
Carson also acknowledged Shani Wilton (Coaches Award) for her leadership, Nuala Geoghegan (Player of the Finals) and Nikki Cox, who won the recent Football Brisbane Premier League Player of the Year Gold Medal.
The coach was confident of keeping a majority of his team together for next year after its terrific season reaching the grand final.
"They are all very keen,'' Carson said.
"They know where they are at now and I think we're a bit smarter and we'll be better in different areas.''
He hopes a 12-team women's Premier League competition can be established for next season to create a more balanced home and away series.
The experienced coach plans to resume training for the 2019 season in January.
"I've told the girls to have Christmas off,'' Carson said, planning a couple of trials in December before stepping up preparations in the third week in January.
"I just want them to have a break.''
The top Bulls men's award on Saturday night was given to Ipswich football journeyman Nick Parfitt.
The Capital League 1 team Player of the Year also shared the Players' Player award with another loyal Bulls defender Chris Denman.
Duga was yet to confirm his pre-season men's team plans.
Ipswich City Bulls award winners for 2018
Brendan Madden Award: Marissa Maitland.
Brisbane Women's Premier League: Coaches Award - Shani Wilton. Players' Player: Marissa Maitland. Player of the Finals: Nuala Geoghegan. Player of the Year: Marissa Maitland.
BWPL Reserves: Coaches Award - Cara Tucker. Players' Player: Jennifer Drey. Player of the Year: Sarah Tuhoro.
Capital League 1 Men's Reserve and A Grade: C1 Men's Young Player of the Year - Ronald Batal. C1 Men's Coaches Award: Glenn Stenzel. Reserve Grade Players' Player: Dean Stenzel. Reserve Grade Player of the Finals: Lincoln Neville. Reserve Grade Player of the Year: Dean Stenzel. Capital 1 Men's Players' Player: Nick Parfitt/Chris Denman. Capital 1 Men's Player of the Year: Nick Parfitt.
Men's City 3: Coaches Award - Brad Hyland. Players' Player: Zach Wilson. Player of the Finals: Andreas Heider. Player of the Year: Chris Heider.
Men's City 5: Coaches Award - William Bean. Players' Player: Laurence Wendt. Player of the Year: Leslie Thornton.
Men's City 6: Coaches Award - Mitchell Golebiowski. Players' Player: Thomas Shaw. Player of the Year: Brad Grahame.s
Men's City 7: Coaches Award - Simon Kolbee. Players' Player: Phillip Detmers. Player of the Finals: Ethan Graham. Player of the Year: Adam Moore.
Women's City 3: Coaches Award - Susannah Weier. Players' Player: Xanthe Sheperdson. Player of the Year: Angela Marsh.
Women's City 5: Coaches Award - Pagan Buckner. Players' Player: Tenieka Armitage. Player of the Year: Brittany Smith.
Under 18 boys: Coaches Award - Harrison Brown. Players' Player: Bailey Brown. Player of the Year: Zac Hall.