West Allis Central's Key led Bulldogs' resurgence
Junior guard named to All-Suburban team after having big year
The comeback season enjoyed by the West Allis Central boys basketball team was literally 'keyed' by its junior point guard.
Brandon Key provided floor leadership, strong decision-making and talents on both offense and defense to help the Bulldogs finish with 20 victories, doubling their total from the previous season.
Central went 20-5 for the campaign, snaring second place behind unbeaten Brookfield Central in the Greater Metro Conference and advancing to a WIAA Division 1 sectional semifinal contest against Racine Case.
Key was a big reason for the surge, as he averaged 15.4 points, 7.3 assists, 2.5 rebounds and 2.2 steals this season.
That all-around performance, along with his role in turning around the Bulldogs' fortunes, places Key on the 2013-14 NOW Newspapers All-Suburban Team.
Key is versatile
Key did a little bit of everything for the Bulldogs.
On offense, he used his quickness to penetrate the lane and either go in for a layup or pass off to a teammate for an inside shot. Key could also step outside and hit the mid-range jumper or 3-pointer.
Defensively, he would pester the opposition's guards and again would use his quickness to come up with deflections or steals.
"Brandon is a great leader," Central head coach Dave Mlachnik said. "He is a true point guard. Brandon did an outstanding job this year of distributing the ball to different scorers, but also knew when to take over and score himself.
"His basketball IQ is so high that he was an extension of the coach on the floor.
"His creativity and vision on the floor is what makes Brandon one of the elite players in the area."
Mlachnik said Key developed both on and off the court.
"We saw growth both as a player and as a person," the coach said. "He really matured this season."
Key was named first-team all-Greater Metro along with senior teammate Ron Turkvan.
Key was also chosen for an all-star game this summer in Indianapolis featuring top juniors from 12 states.
He will return
The best news for Mlachnik is that Key is just a junior. He will return next season, along with other key performers such as Devaughn Ross, David Mlachnik and Jerome Cummings, as the Bulldogs look to move past Brookfield Central into the top spot in the GMC.
As for colleges, Coach Mlachnik said the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and UW-Green Bay are already showing interest in him.
Your link to the biggest stories in the suburbs delivered Thursday mornings.
Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter Get the Newsletter!
- Video, photos: Skateboarding in West Allis
- West Allis Central graduate inducted into Wisconsin, Indiana swimming halls of fame
- Sports Notes: July 30, 2015
- Strong offensive attack paces competitive West Allis Hale baseball team
- West Allis Hale's McMurray outduels West's Fritz in regional
- West Allis Central falls short of Cudahy in regional championship
- Baseball: Hale nips New Berlin West, 2-1, in regional opener
- Sports Notes: July 16, 2015
- Miscues hurt West Allis Hale baseball team in Greater Metro Conference title game
- West Allis Hale baseball team makes Greater Metro Conference Tournament run