by Matt O’Connor
Six feet and seven inches.
That is the same height as Brooklyn Nets stars Joe Johnson and Paul Pierce.
But that is also the height of the newest member of the Eagle basketball team. Sophomore Jeremy Peck, a transfer from The Village School of Houston, is already creating buzz before even stepping foot on the court. As basketball season draws closer and as the days pass by, the buzz surrounding Peck continues to grow.
According to Peck, the decision to transfer to St. Thomas was an easy one.
“I was supposed to come to St. Thomas last year, but was given some bad advice and decided not to come,” Peck said. “Rarely do you get a second chance at great opportunities, so when I spoke with coach Kwok and he expressed interest in me coming here, I jumped all over it.”
The addition of Peck will greatly help this year’s team size wise; at one point last year, the tallest starter stood at only six feet one inch. According to head coach John Kwok, having Peck is already proving to be very beneficial.
“The addition of Jeremy has made an instant impact to our team. Defensively, he has increased our ability to rebound and his size makes him a really good help defender,” Kwok said. “He has also made a huge impact offensively by doing little things like running the floor and offensive rebounds have gotten the team easy buckets.”
The addition of Peck is sure to be a big one, in more ways than one. Kwok plans to utilize Peck’s size in both the team’s offensive and defensive strategy.
“Having a post does change our style of sets in the half court,” Kwok said. “We are more balanced now then perimeter oriented. But an emphasis this year is to play faster.”
Peck believes that with such high levels of talent and skill that this year’s team posses, pressure and high expectations are all in a day’s work.
“I fully expect us to make a strong run at a state championship not only this season, but the next two as well,” Peck said. “I know that there are good players in our district, and all over the Houston area, so in order for us to reach our goals, we need to improve every day and play as a team.”
Kwok notes that although the addition of Peck has been the focal point of offseason attention, there have been many underclassmen that have stepped up their game and should make an impact on the varsity level this year.
“I think Colin and David Jones will be big contributors at the guard spot along with Rock Flowers,” Kwok said. “Josh Shawn has also been a big spark for team and has done great defensively. The young forwards of Luke Dworak, transfer Jacob Strom, and Tim Goddard have been playing well on both ends of the court.”
As the season opener on October 24 draws ever closer, the excitement for the basketball season grows greater and greater.
“I am very excited for this season to start,” Peck said. “I am not kidding when I say that I expect to help bring multiple state titles back to STHS, it is going to be a lot of fun.”
With the talent on this year’s squad, a state championship could very much be within reach.