Coming off 40-point performance, Gonzaga's Julian Strawther named WCC Player of the Week

Jan. 30—Normally it takes two solid performances to warrant West Coast Conference Player of the Week consideration. Or, in the case of Gonzaga's Julian Strawther, one 40-point eruption.

Strawther won the WCC's weekly award for the first time after scoring a career-high 40 points on a career-high eight 3-pointers during Gonzaga's 82-67 victory over Portland on Saturday at the Chiles Center.

In Gonzaga's only game of the week, Strawther finished 14 of 21 from the field, 8 of 12 from the 3-point line and 4 of 4 from the free throw line to secure the first 40-point game by a Gonzaga player since Kyle Wiltjer poured in 45 points against Pacific during the 2015 season. Strawther also had six rebounds and three steals in the game.

The junior wing from Las Vegas improved his scoring average to 14.7 points per game and bumped his 3-point percentage to 43.5%. He's reached double figures in 10 of Gonzaga's last 11 games and has scored 20 points or more on four occasions.

It is the first time Strawther has won WCC Player of the Week honors and the fourth time this a Gonzaga player has claimed the honor. Senior forward Drew Timme is a three-time recipient this season.

Saint Mary's guard Aidan Mahaney won WCC Freshman of the Week for the fifth consecutive week and the eight time this season. Strawther's 12th-ranked Zags and Mahaney's 18th-ranked Gaels will meet on Saturday in Moraga, California, in a highly anticipated WCC showdown.