West Allis Central football team hopes for fresh start in 2014
Coach cites new atmosphere
Dax Rodriguez knows his West Allis Central football team is headed in a new direction this season.
"We can only go up," Rodriguez said after the Bulldogs finished 0-9 in 2013. "We have a new atmosphere this year. Our numbers are up about 25 to 30 players. We have 60 this year after finishing in the low 30s last season.
"We also have five new coaches, so there are some changes."
One area that will not change is at quarterback, where senior Will Konecny returns after throwing for 1,369 yards and eight touchdowns last season.
"He has a lot of experience and is a good overall athlete," Rodriguez said of Konecny, who earned honorable mention all-Greater Metro Conference last season. "He has a big-time arm and can make any throw. If we can give him time, he can be one of the top quarterbacks in the area."
Rodriguez said the Bulldogs will switch to more of a pro-style attack after using the spread offense the past couple of seasons.
His receivers will include junior Brent Hunter, who collected 15 receptions last season, and senior Maico Navejar with 17 catches, as well as senior tight end Brandon Dreissen.
The running game lost its top ground gainer from last season in Jason Alvarez, but junior Stacey Andress, senior Kion Criswell (a track standout) and sophomore Davon Jones will lead the way.
The offensive line, which Rodriguez said will be a strength of the team, features senior center Adam Schroeder, who played tackle last season, and senior guard Jared Meeks.
The Central defense will be paced by senior inside linebacker Brandon Perce, who started every game last year, junior nose guard Kenny Taylor and senior defensive end Robert Torres.
Besides the notable increase in numbers, Rodriguez said the Bulldogs are bigger and stronger physically this season.
They will have to deal with a Greater Metro that might be a bit down this year.
"The conference will be younger overall," Rodriguez said. "A lot of teams lost a lot of guys the past few years. It will still be ultracompetitive, though."
Rodriguez said Sussex Hamilton, Menomonee Falls and Marquette should be among the leaders.
The Bulldogs will find out about the strength of the conference early as they open the GMC season Friday, Sept. 5, at home against Hamilton.
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