2012-13 CRC Tournament >> Results Press Coverage

Prime Prep def. Huntington St. Joseph Prep , 59-46

By Kurt Stubbs
Cancer Research Classic

WHEELING, W.Va., Jan. 4, 2013 -- Game 3 was billed as the marquee game of the night and perhaps the entire CRC showcase of talent. The talent was off the charts without question, but the overall game, was sloppy at best. Prime Prep out of Dallas, Texas met Huntington St. Joseph Prep (WV) in a match up of nationally ranked powerhouses in front of Kentucky head coach John Calipari.

The game never really lived up to the hype lacking a flow for much of the contest, but Prime Prep used an elite point guard, a talented frontline, and a patient zone to gather a 59-46 decision in a game featuring a smorgasbord of high major commits and prospects.

Huntington St. Joseph Prep’s Andrew Wiggins, who is regarded by almost every basketball talking head as the nation’s No. 1 prospect, struggled to find any kind of rhythm in the game and at times seemed almost disinterested. Wiggins struggled to get opportunities as Prime Prep used a zone to force him to give the ball up and make him work for everything in the paint.

Great players will find a way to put up numbers, which was the case for Wiggins on Friday night, but it certainly won’t be one of his more memorable games. The 6-foot-8 senior finished with 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting, and managed to snag a team-high nine rebounds.

While Wiggins was struggling to find breathing room, Prime Prep came out and established its dominance in the low post right from the opening tip. TCU commit Karviar Shepherd produced back-to-back left shoulder baby hooks and newly acquired sophomore Elijah Thomas took the Express to school on the block with a serious of old school post moves. Add in junior point guard Emmanuel Mudiay constantly putting pressure on the basket and the Truth was rolling.

Mudiay, one of the nation’s elite point guard prospects, totaled nine points in the first half, while controlling the tempo. Mudiay is nearly impossible to speed up, which makes it really tough when you get behind against Prime Prep. Thomas also added nine points in the opening half.

Prime Prep led 27-17 at the break and Wiggins didn’t record his first points until 6:45 to go in the second stanza. He was held to just four shot attempts in the first half.

The Truth owned the 3rd chapter as well holding a 16-11 advantage as LSU commit Jordan Mickey got going and Thomas continued his assault in the lane.

Wiggins started to get rolling in the 3rd following a couple basket drives and set play for a back door lob dunk in which the youngster nearly choked himself on the rim. However, it was never enough to overcome Mudiay’s floor general skills and the points in the paint differential.

Mudiay finished with 18 points on 6-of-11 shooting and added six rebounds. Thomas, who turned plenty of heads with his stellar performance, equaled Mudiay’s point output on an 8-of-10 showing from field adding five strays. Mickey totaled 13 points and 13 boards, and Shepherd netted eight points.

Arkansas commit Moses Kingsley managed seven points and six boards in defeat, while Xavier Rathan-Mayes, a Florida State pledge, tallied six points.

Stat of the Game:
Huntington St. Joseph Prep shot a brisk 32 percent from the field and 15 percent from behind the arc. Outside of Wiggins, the Express were just above 25 percent shooting. Rathan-Mayes, who is usually a lights out shooter, was just 2-of-12 from the floor.