Media name Gophers' Zahui B. Big Ten Player of the Year


Amanda Zahui B. has had a terrific season for the Gophers women's basketball team and on Monday she was recognized for it as the media named the sophomore center the Big Ten Player of the Year.

According to the University of Minnesota, she is the first Gopher women's player since Lindsay Whalen in 2002 to be named the conference player of the year.

Zahui finished the regular season averaging 18.5 points, 12.7 rebounds and 4.0 blocks per game. Twice this season she has been the ESPNW National Player of the Week and was named Big Ten Player of the Week four times.

"Pretty much speechless," Zahui said on the Big Ten Network Monday. "I got really happy and excited. It was just like a weird feeling. I did not expect it."

Zahui set single-game Big Ten records with 29 rebounds and 12 blocks this season. She already owns Minnesota's career record with 225 blocks and holds Gophers' single-season records with 120 blocks and 273 rebounds defensive rebounds.

But most impressive is how the sophomore has responded in big games. The university says she is averaging 25.8 points, 16.8 rebounds, 4.3 blocks and 2.0 steals against teams ranked in the top-25 this year. Additionally, Zahui has a .548 field goal percentage in those games.

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According to the Pioneer Press, Zahui lost 20 pounds during the offseason to improve her effectiveness in new coach Marlene Stollings' up-tempo system.

She wasn't the only Gopher woman to win conference honors. Shae Kelley was named to the media's All Big Ten first team.

Gopher freshman Carlie Wagner was also named to the Big Ten All-Freshman team.

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