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Sports >  Gonzaga basketball

Gonzaga junior Julian Strawther in final five for Julius Erving Award

March 8, 2023 Updated Wed., March 8, 2023 at 5:37 p.m.

Gonzaga’s Julian Strawther reacts after center Efton Reid’s dunk against Saint Mary’s during the 2nd half of the Zags’ 77-51 victory Tues. in the WCC Tournament title game.  (By Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga’s Julian Strawther reacts after center Efton Reid’s dunk against Saint Mary’s during the 2nd half of the Zags’ 77-51 victory Tues. in the WCC Tournament title game. (By Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review) Buy this photo

Gonzaga junior wing Julian Strawther is one of five finalists for the Julius Erving Award, presented annually to the top small forward in college basketball.

The other four finalists are Brandon Miller (Alabama), Keyontae Johnson (Kansas State), Jalen Wilson (Kansas) and Jaime Jaquez Jr. (UCLA).

Strawther, who averaged 17.6 points and made 44.2% of his 3-point attempts in conference play, was named first-team All-West Coast Conference. He was voted to the all-tournament team following the Zags’ 77-51 rout over Saint Mary’s in the WCC championship game.

The 6-foot-7 Strawther averages 15.1 points and 5.9 rebounds, second in both categories behind teammate Drew Timme. Strawther has connected on 53.6% of shots inside the arc and 42.6% of 3s.

Strawther has made a team-leading 72 3-pointers. The Las Vegas native has scored in double figures in eight consecutive games and 12 of the past 13. He scored a career-best 40 points in a road victory over Portland.

Former Zags Corey Kispert (2021) and Rui Hachimura (2019) are past winners of the Erving Award. Duke’s Wendell Moore Jr. won last season.

Fans are permitted to vote on the award beginning Friday at hoophallawards.com. The winner will be announced in April.

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