West Allis - During the Greater Metro Conference season, the West Allis Central boys basketball team will have to play in some tough venues, such as Wauwatosa East and Marquette.
The Bulldogs got a taste of what that might be like on Friday when they played at Destiny, a Milwaukee school with 289 students.
"That is a tight, small gym, and very loud," head coach Dave Mlachnik said.
Central, though, escaped with a tough 80-74 victory to open its 2012-13 season.
Sophomore Brandon Key led the way with 21 points, along with eight assists and eight steals, while Ron Turkvan added 15 points.
Both players were regarded as keys this season for Central, which is trying to recover from the loss of several players to graduation and the moving on of point guard Jarvis Garrett, who moved to a prep school in the East.
Mlachnik said both Key and Turkvan played well, but received plenty of help from others.
Anthony Phillips earned 10 points, Jaquan Martin contributed seven points and 10 rebounds while playing active defense, Mlachnik said, and Jequan Carson chipped in with seven points and six assists.
Keeping Destiny well within range was Jerrelle Deberry with 38 points, including 14-of-22 from the free throw line. Deberry took just six fewer free throws than the entire Central team.
"We've got a ways to go," Mlachnik said of the Bulldogs, "but we showed a good effort, and we trusted one another. We certainly have some things to clean up in practice this week, though."
Mlachnik likes his team's depth, as 11 players got in the game and 10 scored.
Central met Kenosha Indian Trail in its home opener on Tuesday and will play in a special event pitting Milwaukee-area teams against Madison squads this weekend. The Bulldogs will meet Madison East at Madison West High School on Friday.
Central then will not play again until Friday, Dec. 7, when it opens the GMC season at Sussex Hamilton, which features top scorer Brady Ellingson.
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