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'It’s such an honor': Gonzaga's Jenn Wirth named WCC's co-Player of the Year

Post Falls native Melody Kempton also earned Sixth Woman of the Year honors.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Gonzaga's Jenn Wirth, Melody Kempton, and Jill Townsend all earned All-WCC honors on Tuesday.

Wirth was named the conference's co-Player of the Year with BYU's Shaylee Gonzales, while Kempton earned Sixth Woman of the Year honors, and Townsend was named to the conference's first team.

Wirth was first in the conference in field goal percentage at 56.7% and third in the conference in rebounding with 8.42 per game. She also ranks second in the WCC with nine double-doubles this season. She was selected WCC Player of the Week twice.

"I did not expect that. To be honest, I didn’t even know when they were going to come out with the awards," said Wirth. "It’s such an honor. I feel really grateful that people noticed my hard work throughout the season, but I’m just one person on this team. I think our team’s success kind of drew attention to me and so I owe it to my teammates always."

Kempton won the conference's first ever Sixth Woman of the Year award after averaging seven points per game.

"It’s a perfect award for her. I don’t know if I’d call her a glue guy, but you have to have more than just five. She is every bit as effective as those other guys, and she gives us a burst of energy and rebounding and now she’s guarding people really well. I’m glad they made that award because it’s tailor made for her. They should maybe name it after her, honestly," said Gonzaga head coach Lisa Fortier.

Townsend and Wirth both made the conference's first team after Townsend was named the WCC Player of the Year last season. 

Townsend led the team in scoring with 13.8 points per game, which ranked seventh in the WCC. She hit 49.8% of her shots this year, which was good for fourth in the conference in shooting percentage.

It's pretty rare for a team to have two different WCC Players of the Year playing alongside each other.

"Jill’s welcomed me to the club. She’s giving me a little bit of hate for not being the first one to do it, but I’ll let her say she paved the way for me," said Wirth with a laugh. "It’s been a lot of fun. Just super proud of her. She still also had a great season."

One that both Jenn, Jill, and the rest of the squad hope brings the Zags a WCC Tournament title. 

The past two years in Vegas have not been kind to the Zags, as they’ve returned to Spokane without a trophy both times and in the case of two years ago, multiple season ending injuries.

"You know, it’s kind of a touchy subject, but we can learn from it a lot. We have that extra motivation because of those last two years. If the last two years kind of went as we hoped and we won and we kind of went by unscathed, I don’t think we’d have that extra chip on our shoulder going into this year," said Wirth.

"I think they have a little bit of like, this has been sucky. Let’s not have this be so bad. Let’s turn this around and make this a fun March and a great experience," said Fortier.

LeeAnne Wirth and Kayleigh Truong also received WCC Honorable Mention honors along with Kempton.

To see a full list of WCC honorees click here.