Generation NEXT: five freshmen look to lead the next generation of Eagle athletics


by Andrew McCulloch
Eagle Staff

William Heck …

… is the younger brother of senior Harrison Heck and looking to make a name for himself at St. Thomas. Heck, an AOS graduate, plans to play football and baseball for the Eagles. Heck showed immense potential on the football field this past season. Freshman football coach Keith Page raved about his ability and versatility on the field.

“William Heck is a game changer,” Page said. “He has great athletic talents and has a feel for the game. He will be a guy the other team tries to stop.”

Heck has received valuable help from his coaches and is quickly improving. But he knows that he must continue to better himself on and off the field.

“My coaches have helped me improve how to run with the football like hitting the hole and bouncing outside when I need to,” Heck said. “(But) I need to get bigger and stronger to be successful in football and I need to keep my grades up.”

One thing is certain though: William Heck is NEXT.

Lorenzo Neal …

… is a football stud who played in middle school at Fort Bend Christian. He made his St. Thomas debut on the football field this past fall. His scary combination of size and quickness make him a frightening force on the field.

“I am quick off the line and getting to the ball carrier,” Neal said.

“Lorenzo is powerful, with good movement and can dominate when he wants too,” Page said. “He wrestles heavy weight which only adds to his athleticism.”

Neal is a hard-working, young athlete with a good knowledge of the game. On top of that, he knows exactly what he has to do to reach the kind of success he desires at the high school level.

“It takes hard work,” Neal said. “I heard someone say ‘hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard’ and that really stuck with me.”

When it comes to being NEXT, Neal knows that he will have to step up and carry St. Thomas to new heights with the help of his teammates.

“I believe this year starts a new era for STH athletics,” Neal said. “We have a very talented freshman class and I think the sky is the limit for us and future classes.”

Brett Centracchio …

… is a native of Atlanta, Ga. that recently moved to the Houston area over the summer.

Although he is new to the city and school, Centracchio is anxious to show what he can do both on the football field and the baseball diamond. He has a dangerous combination of vision and speed that make him a force on the field.

“Brett is a smart football player that understands the game and add that to his athletic ability and he is a promising player,” Page said. “He will be a big contributor at linebacker and receiver/running back and will be a coach on the field.”

Centracchio enjoys football because of the speed of the game and his versatility helps create mismatches at positions all over the field. His athleticism will make him a solid contributor to the football program for years to come.

“My favorite sport is football because the game speed is fast and it requires athletic ability,” Centracchio said. “My coaches have helped me improve my skills at linebacker and running back and improved my knowledge of the game.”

Centracchio knows exactly why he is NEXT: “I can help bring championships to St. Thomas.”

David Jones …

… is a former St. Thomas More student and intends to be a three sport star in football, basketball and baseball.

Jones made more than a splash this past football season when he intercepted a Kohl Stewart pass in the waning moments of the Eagles’ 27-6 victory over rival St. Pius.

Jones has also looked impressive on the court, earning a spot on varsity basketball. He has sensational athleticism and a good knowledge of the game that make him a dynamic player.

“Jones is a natural athlete who started towards the end of this season on the varsity at corner,” Page said. “He has a great feel for the game and will contribute at corner and receiver / running back.”

Despite his natural ability, Jones praised his coaches for helping him to improve in his time at St. Thomas.

“My coaches have taught me coverages and vision as a cornerback,” Jones said. “They all give me courage and determination and all have shown belief in me.”

David Jones has certainly shown that he is NEXT.

Drew Guidroz …

… is a dual sport athlete in football and basketball from St. Anthony of Padua. Guidroz, an experienced athlete, is ready to bring his game to the high school level. His play making ability should help him contribute in a big way to both the football and basketball programs.

“Drew is a smooth player with good range,” Page said. “Drew always seems to make a big play when you need it. He has a nose for the ball and is always in position to make a play.”

Guidroz has a knack for making plays, but he made sure to credit his coaches for helping him improve and change other aspects of his style of play.

Everyone loves the spotlight when they have a chance to steal it, but Guidroz has a different goal in mind.

“(My goal is) to get a state championship ring by my senior year,” Guidroz said.