Whitworth's Valle Named NWC Player of the Year, Jurlina and Love - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Whitworth's Valle Named NWC Player of the Year, Jurlina and Love Named 1st Team

George Valle, a senior forward from Bellevue, leads the Pirates in scoring and rebounding this season. George Valle, a senior forward from Bellevue, leads the Pirates in scoring and rebounding this season.

Whitworth University Athletics

SPOKANE, Wash.  – George Valle has been selected as the 2016 Northwest Conference Player of the Year, while Kenny Love and Christian Jurlina are First Team All-NWC honorees for the second straight season, according to the official All-Northwest Conference team released today by the league office.

Click here for the official 2016 All-Northwest Conference team.

Valle, a senior forward from Bellevue, leads the Pirates in scoring and rebounding this season.  He ranks among the NWC leaders in points per game (16.8 – third), rebounds per game (7.4 – fifth), field goal percentage (56.1 – fifth) and three-point percentage (43.1 – sixth).  He has been selected as the NWC Player of the Week three times this season.  Valle, who was an honorable mention All-NWC selection last season, has posted five double-doubles this winter.  Valle has started every game since stepping foot on campus as a freshman – 113 games and counting.  He now has 1,394 points in his career and ranks 8th on Whitworth's all-time scoring list. 

Love, a junior guard from Santa Rosa, California, is a First Team honoree for the second straight season.  He was the 2015 NWC Player of the Year as well.  Love averages 14.1 points per game and he ranks second in the NWC in assists per game (3.3).  Love makes nearly 40% of his three-pointers and is fourth in the NWC in free throw percentage (82.8).  He was named the MVP of the D3hoops.com Classic in Las Vegas in December and selected as the NWC Player of the Week for those efforts.

Jurlina, a junior from Sydney, Australia, is also a First Team honoree for the second year in a row.  He was named NWC Player of the Week on January 18th after leading the Pirates to road victories at Willamette and George Fox.  He ranks fifth in the conference in scoring average (14.9 ppg).  He also ranks second on the team in rebounds per game (5.4) and makes over 46% of his field goals.  In January Jurlina became the 26th player in Whitworth history to surpass 1,000 career points and now ranks 16th on the Pirates' all-time scoring list with 1,094 points.

This trio has led 3rd-ranked Whitworth to a 24-1 record this season, tying the best regular season mark in school history.  The Pirates claimed their seventh straight regular season NWC title with a 15-1 record and are the top seed in this week's conference tournament.

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