The Cootamundra Sports Foundation has announced its 2019 awards for individual sporting excellence, high achievement in team sports and recognised the work of sports administrators. Congratulations to everyone in the community who participated in sport during 2019. It was a year where many people excelled in a wide range of sports that Cootamundra offers.

Frank Smith Memorial Trophy Sportsperson of The Year: Samantha Graham

Basketball, netball, TAG rugby, school sports Samantha Graham collecting an award at the 2019 Sports Foundation Dinner from guest Kurt Herzog. Samantha represented the Australian Country Junior Basketball Cup (ACJBC) girl’s U16’s on their tour of New Zealand, joining girls selected from NSW, Victoria and South Australia. The team won the Gold Medal at this tournament.

She represented NSW in the U16’s ACJBC Kookaburras team and played with the Cootamundra Cougars U16 team – winning the grand final by 40 points over West Wyalong with Sam collecting the MVP award. Samantha represented the Southern Sports Academy (SSA) and played in the Academy Games in Newcastle. No SSA girl’s side had ever won a game in this competition before but in 2019 the girls ended up finishing fourth which was a big achievement for the girls and the academy.

In netball, Sam played with the U16 Temora netball team in Sydney at the State Age Carnival on the June long weekend. Samantha played in the ACT U16 Tag Rugby side against Niue Victoria, Maori Victoria, Cook Islands Victoria and American Samoa Victoria. From here Sam was selected to play in the Australian U16 Girls side at this year’s ANZAC cup (which was unfortunately postponed).

At Cootamundra High School, she was named Age Swimming Champion, Age Cross Country Champion and represented the school in the open soccer team.