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Demon scoops AFLW Rising Star and uni placement inside 30 minutes

Captain Nat, Pendles holds firm Nat Edwards and Matt Thompson with the latest news

HIGH-FLYING Brisbane Lions key Tayla Harris and Melbourne midfielder Lily Mithen are the round two nominations for the NAB AFL Women's Rising Star award.

Mithen, 18, played at senior level last year, representing North Geelong in the VWFL division one, and occasionally for Geelong in the VFL Women's competition (the top division in Victorian women's footy). She has also captained Vic Country at under-18 level.

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Selected 73rd overall in last year's draft, Mithen was instrumental in Melbourne's come-from-behind victory against Collingwood on Saturday night. She finished with 14 disposals and helped kick-start the Demons' run-and-carry game in the second half.

Monday was a big day for Mithen, who was told of her nomination just half an hour after finding out she had been accepted to study business marketing at RMIT University starting this year.


"I was at the club doing recovery with the girls, and (football manager) Debbie Lee walked in, told me to stand up, shook my hand and said, 'Congratulations, you're the Rising Star nominee'," Mithen said.

"I'm definitely pleased. It was a good win and I was happy with how I played. I got a bit of the ball and helped the team out, but I didn't think I starred by any stretch."

Harris, 19, is already well known for her high kicking action and pack marks and was signed as a Lions marquee player last July.

Born in Brisbane, Harris started playing senior footy for Zillmere in the QAWFL at just 15, winning the best and fairest award in her first season.

Her nomination comes on the back of a 12-disposal, two-goal effort in the Lions' win against Fremantle at Fremantle Oval on Sunday afternoon.

Marquee Lion Tayla Harris in full flight against the Dockers on Sunday. Picture: AFL Photos

Harris also took six contested marks (playing both forward and in defence) and her steady hands were a point of difference between the two sides.

"It is a huge honour," Harris said of the nomination.

"I'm happy about the two from two and would rather talk about that any day of the week, but it is something I'm really honoured to be nominated for.

"To help my team and finish off the hard work by our defence … it's my job and it makes me feel good."

Two players will be nominated per round for the Rising Star award, with the winner chosen from the 14 nominees and announced at season's end.

Find round one's NAB AFLW Rising Star nominations plus news, fixtures and more at the AFL Women's hub

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