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Sioux Falls, South Dakota – The West Virginia Mountaineers (3-0) defeated the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers to win the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic.  Here are how all West Virginia players graded out for today’s game and for the season so far:

Starters: 

Miles McBride – Not a spectacular game for McBride on either side of the ball, but he was key in the 2nd half when the Mountaineers went on an 18-2 run.  McBride settled the team down and made sure that each possession counted.  Overall, great tournament by Deuce.  Stats: 14 points, 3 assists, 2 rebounds (4-11 FG, 1-2 3PT)  Game Grade: B+, Season Grade: A-

Sean McNeil – It appeared that McNeil came into the season with an incredible amount of confidence and just couldn’t get his shot to go consistently throughout the Crossover Classic.  McNeil shot 2-9 from the field and 1-5 from three point range today.  Either he needs to be more consistent, or Taz Sherman needs to be playing more.  Stats: 9 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assists (2-9 FG, 1-5 3PT)  Game Grade: C-, Season Grade: C-

Emmitt Matthews, Jr. – Matthews has brief moments of brilliance but he disappears offensively far too often.  He would make a much better energy guy off the bench than a starter.   Stats:  7 points, 4 rebounds, 0 assists (2-3 FG, 1-1 3PT)  Game Grade: C+, Season Grade: C-

Oscar Tshiebwe – Tshiebwe looks lost and unlike himself right now, and he has to learn to stay out of foul trouble, particularly early in games.  Stats: 5 points, 7 rebounds, 0 assists (2-5 FG, 0-0 3PT) Game Grade: C-, Season Grade: C-

Derek Culver – I’ve been very critical of Culver’s effort in the first two games, but he didn’t leave anything on the court today and won the Mountaineers the tournament championship.  I had to do a double-take at the stats when I saw that Culver had only 1 rebound today.   Stats: 15 points, 1 rebounds, 2 assists (7-12 FG, 0-0 3PT) Game Grade:  A-, Season Grade: B+

Reserves:

Taz Sherman – Sherman is out-classing McNeil at the two guard position right and should be starting and playing more minutes.  Taz has been efficient on offense and pesky defensively.  Really like what I’ve seen from him through the first 3 games.   Stats:  12 points, 2 rebounds, 0 assist (5-8 FG, 2-3 3PT)  Game Grade: A, Season Grade: B+

Jalen Bridges – Bridges only got a few minutes again today and looks extremely nervous right now.  He’ll no doubt add versatility and depth when he gains some confidence, but I just haven’t seen much from him so far.    Stats:  0 points, 0 rebounds, 0 assists (0-1 FG, 0-1 3PT) Game Grade: D, Season Grade: D+

Isaiah Cottrell – Cottrell missed all three shots that he took today, but he has great size and will eventually step in as a key interior reserve this season.  Again, like Bridges, lacks confidence as a freshman.  Stats: 0 points, 2 rebound, 0 assists (0-3 FG, 0-0 3PT) Game Grade: C-, Season Grade: D

Gabe Osabuohien – Culver won the MVP of the Crossover Classic, but no one on the team was better this week than Gabe Osabuohien.  He completely out-performed Oscar Tshiebwe over the past three days and is an absolute rock and clear leader for the Mountaineers.  Stats:  8 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists (3-5 FG, 0-0 3PT) Game Grade: A+, Season Grade A 

Jordan McCabe – McCabe only played four minutes today, but his effort, particularly on defense, was apparent.  McCabe is an ideal backup point guard for the Mountaineers.   Stats: 0 points, 1 assist, 2 rebounds (0-0 FG, 0-0 3PT) Game Grade: B, Season Grade:  B-

Kedrian Johnson – Did not play.  Stats: 0 points, 0 assists, 0 rebounds (0-0 FG, 0-0 3PT)  Game Grade: N/A, Season Grade: F

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