As captain of the Illawarra Academy of Sport's AFL program, Rylee Jansen took on a mentoring role for her teammates.
It's an action that did not go unnoticed, with the teenager's coaches impressed by the way she worked to support the other players in the squad throughout what was a challenging year.
Jansen has been rewarded for her commitment by receiving the Academy's AFL player of the year award. It's an honour the rover was surprised but proud to receive.
"It's a privilege to receive this award," Jansen said. "There are so many other talented individuals in the squad.
"The Academy has developed me as a player, the coaches have taught me so many new skills. It has also made me a better person through education sessions. I've learnt a lot about myself, leadership and motivation throughout this year."
Opportunities have been few and far between for Jansen and her fellow teammates in 2020, COVID-19 putting a stop to representative programs.
She did, however, continue to work hard throughout the suspension, determined to be ready once sport returned.
With such a focus on achieving her goals, Academy AFL coach Lee Murray is confident Jansen can achieve higher honours in the coming years.
"Rylee is an exceptional leader who definitely leads from the front and by example," Murray said. "Always in attendance at gym sessions, always in attendance at training sessions and gives everything 100%".