Hard work pays off: Gonzaga walk-on Sorenson gets full-ride scholarship - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Hard work pays off: Gonzaga walk-on Sorenson gets full-ride scholarship

Andrew Sorenson began his career at GU in the student section.  Now he's playing on a full-ride scholarship. (Photo: KHQ) Andrew Sorenson began his career at GU in the student section. Now he's playing on a full-ride scholarship. (Photo: KHQ)

SPOKANE, Wash. - Not bad for a guy who started his career at Gonzaga as a freshman member of the Kennel Club.  GU's coaching staff told senior walk-on Andrew Sorenson he'd be playing on a full-ride scholarship from here on out.

Sorenson learned of the news Saturday after the Zags' blowout win over San Francisco.

A native of Olympia, Sorenson has played in 10 of the Zags' 16 games this season.  He's averaged almost 2 points per game, including 3 against the Dons.  He scored 6 in the game against Montana State Billings, the Bulldogs first game of the season.

Scoring 2-points per game is a far cry from Sorenson's first days in Spokane.  He started Gonzaga as your average, run-of-the-mill student - a member of the student section Kennel Club.  He was recruited by only one school coming out of high school: Grays Harbor Community College, an opportunity he turned down in favor of getting a four-year degree, but he never gave up.

"I didn't ever want to stop playing.  I wanted to play as long as I could," Sorenson said.  "I came to Gonzaga thinking, 'why not?  Try."

Try he did.  He remembers waking up early every morning to work out at the gym.  Then, at walk-on try-outs, coach Tommy Lloyd spelled it out for him.

"He pretty much said, 'you're not a Division I athlete right now,'" recalled Sorenson. 

But Lloyd said, "right now".  He didn't say, "don't come back."  So Sorenson came back the next year after living and breathing basketball, and getting a few good grades under his belt.

"And here we are," he says with a giant grin.  "It's unbelievable.  Every time they chant my name... I get goose bumps going up and down.  I never thought 4 or 5 years ago I'd be in this position."

After school, Sorenson wants to work with the FBI in computer forensics and cyber crime prevention. 

And it's pretty safe to assume he won't take no for an answer.

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