Thousands of votes were cast to celebrate the region’s top athletes from the winter season and in Bloomfield Hills and Bloomfield Township, Andover swimmer Joe Abrash was the Patch Athlete of the Winter Season.
Fans found creative ways to support their athletes, from sending out email blasts to posting on Facebook walls and Tweeting.
deserve recognition for their accomplishments.
The following athletes earned the most votes from their respective Patch communities and are the winners of the Athlete of the Season polls.
Congratulations! Please lend your own congratulations in the comments at the end of this story.
Bloomfield: Joe Abrash
High School swimmer Joe Abrash led a strong field of candidates in the . He won the poll with 63 percent of the vote, with 3,751 votes.
Abrash was one of three athletes with at least 500 votes in this season’s poll.
The Barons’ swimmer is a deserving winner as he graduates as one of the best swimmers in school history. He made the Andover top 10 list for his swimming accomplishments.
The co-captain of the Barons team also finished All-State in three events at the Division 2 state finals. He finished in sixth place (21.95) in the 50-yard freestyle, seventh place in the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:28.54) and the 400-yard freestyle relay (3:14.83).
He also competed in the 100-yard freestyle and finished in 13th place (48.44). At the Oakland County Championship, Abrash place in the top 15 in both the 50 and 100 yard freestyle races.
senior Grant Henderson won the Birmingham Athlete of the Winter Season with 69 percent of the vote (3,031 votes) despite a late charge from Seaholm Tim List (876 votes, with 28 percent of the vote).
Henderson was the Falcons varsity boys basketball team captain this year and earned All-OAA Gold Division first team honors for his play this season.
Henderson showed a lot of heart and determination battling his way back from a broken leg he suffered last season.
The guard led Groves in scoring this season with 13 points per game. He shot 71 percent from the free throw line, averaged four rebounds and close to three assists per game.
In the district semifinals, Henderson hit the game-winning free throw in the final eight seconds to give the Falcons a 46-45 win.
Stephen Wroe was the runaway winner in the . The Berkley-Ferndale varsity hockey team goaltender won with 91 percent of the vote, with 123 votes.
Wroe's phenomenal year in net made him an easy choice.
The Bears won 20 of the 23 games Wroe started this season. He only allowed 1.44 goals a game, with a save percentage of .941.
As a sophomore, he was the only goalie in the Oakland Activities Association to play more than 1,000 minutes. He was honored as part of the Division 1 All-State First team (voted on by the Michigan coaches association) and his coach awarded him team MVP.
In the fall, the Clawson senior was voted athlete of the season by readers for her performance on the school’s volleyball team.
On Friday, Costine also won the Clawson Patch Athlete of the Winter Season for her season on the varsity girls basketball team. Costine won 76 percent of the vote (53 votes).
Costine earned first-team all-league honors in the Macomb Area Conference Silver division for her strong season.
She also led the Trojans in scoring and rebounding, averaging over a double-double game for a second straight year. Her presence inside was a big part of Clawson’s game plan offensively and defensively.
Jordan Ellis led the charge in the Ferndale Athlete of the Winter Season poll just like he did the varsity basketball team.
The senior won with 93 percent of the vote (with 515 votes) and really never trailed in the polls.
As the Eagles' starting point guard, Ellis averaged more than 10 points and five assists per game. He also was one of the team’s top 3-point shooters and defenders. He averaged 2.6 steals per game.
Ellis also ranked 323 out of 500 in the nation for assists, ranked fifth in the state for senior point guards in assists and in Michigan, was one of the top 3-point shooters at his position.
The race for Royal Oak Athlete of the Winter Season was the closest in Oakland County.
Sami Stormont mounted a huge comeback to take over the lead in the poll on the final day over Eric White, winning by 61 votes. Stormont picked up 700 of the 1371 votes cast (51 percent) and White finished in second with 639 votes (46 percent)
For the Ravens' varsity girls basketball team, Stormont put up monster numbers all season. There might not have been a more efficient scorer in Oakland County.
The junior averaged more than 22 points per game on her way to earning Class A All-State First Team honors from the Associated Press. Back in January, Stormont also averaged over nine rebounds a game this season.
The swimming community in Troy showed up in big numbers to help sophomore Troy Chen easily win the Troy Athlete of the Winter Season poll.
Over five days of voting, Chen picked up 1,799 votes of the 2,145 cast.
At the state finals, Chen took seventh place in the 200 IM with a time of 1:55.68 and tied for sixth in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 52.36.
for his performance at the 2012 county championship meet where he won the 100-yard butterfly (52.99) and finished in second place in the 200 IM.
Loyal West Bloomfield readers showed up in big numbers voting for their favorite local athletes.
Over five days of voting, more than 2,500 votes were cast in a very tight contest. In the end, Frankel Jewish Academy senior Tamar Brown edged out Ross Bahro 1,337 votes (51 percent) to 1,167 (45 percent).
Brown was key part of the girls basketball team’s turnaround this season.
In 2011, the team only had two wins. As a captain this year, Brown helped the team finish the season with a 9-11 overall record. She averaged 11 points per game on a team that averaged under 30 points a night.
Brown also accounted for at least half of the team’s points in four of her team’s games.