With a losing record with a month left in its season, Centennial’s varsity girls basketball team is looking to turn the tide. But the challenges haven’t stopped the star in its ranks, Kiley Miller. Miller is only a freshman, but she is the key player if Centennial is going to convert to a winning team.
According to MaxPreps, Miller is the fourth leading freshman in all of the state, scoring 16 points per game.
And she is the leading rebounder in Arizona among freshman girls, averaging 17 rebounds a game.
After being first in the state among all classes in rebounds, she slipped to a close second.
“It was a happy moment,” said Miller, whose favorite subjects are gym and English. “I kind of knew I had a lot of rebounds.”
But her hard work doesn’t end there. Miller is a dominant player on and off the hardwood. Her coach Prayer Branham prides Miller on her work ethic.
“I would say the easiest part about coaching Kiley is her work ethic,” Branham said. “She works hard. It’s very rare that I have to get on her about working hard. That’s honestly the ideal player you ask for.”
At 14, Miller still has work to do. She could improve her post moves and when to block or not, Miller and Branham said.
“Kiley is a great shot blocker, so she wants to block almost every shot,” Branham said. “So, just helping her understand when to go for blocks and when not to go for blocks. I would probably say that’s just the struggle right now. It’s just keeping her out of foul trouble.”
And for now, Miller enjoys where she is at and is not thinking about college.
“I just love the people around me,” she said. “They give me a good vibe, and they’re like another family to me.”
But Branham has Miller’s future all mapped out.
“In the next five to 10 years, Kiley is going to be a star,” Branham said. “I truly believe she is going to play at the collegiate level, and I think she is going to have options as well. She is going to be able to decide where she wants to go based on her work ethic. If she just maintains good grades, she is going to be a heck of a player.”