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September 22, 2013

Around the Horn with ... Mike Skarbelis, North Andover soccer star

North Andover’s 5-10 1/2, 155-pound forward Mike Skarbelis is one of the state’s most potent goal scorers. After scoring nine goals as a sophomore and 20 last fall, he has 13 with three assists this year for the Knights, who were 6-0 entering yesterday’s game against Westford.

“Obviously, he’s very talented,” said first-year Knights head coach Kyle Wood. “Also he’s a hard worker. He puts a lot of pressure on himself to play well. He has all the attributes to be a true champion.”

In this week’s Around the Horn, Skarbelis speaks about his scoring touch, his most memorable goal and why he believes he has the talent to play Division 1 college soccer.

Did you ever expect to have a start like this? “Yes. I was hoping for it. My main goal besides winning a state championship was to break the school record. It’s 57 goals by Jon Wentworth (NA ‘04).”

What makes a goal-scorer? “Calm and composed. Not losing your head. Not every shot will go in. Last game I hit the crossbar three times. Just knowing it will come.”

Do you have a pet move? “Not really. It all depends on the moment. I like to cut back and shoot.”

What’s your favorite all-time goal? “Definitely Concord-Carlisle last year in the Division 2 North final. The go-ahead goal.”

What’s the most goals you’ve ever scored in a game? “I had eight in a game in second grade.”

How is it going with a new coach after playing for the legendary coach Bill Tarbox? “Very well. Very well. He’s doing a very good job. I knew him going into the season. He’s doing a very fantastic job. Coach Tarbox was one of my favorite coaches of all-time. He just wanted us to have fun and enjoy our high school careers.”

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