Mike Skarbelis was the man this year.
The North Andover senior begins this year’s Eagle-Tribune postseason soccer awards with the “Pele Dominance Award.” He also won this year’s “Golden Boot.”
Want dominance? Well here it is ...
Skarbelis scored 41 goals and added 11 assists this fall. He broke North Andover’s all-time program scoring record with 70 goals and 23 assists for his career.
Here are the other awards:
MASS. TEAM OF THE YEAR: North Andover
North Andover — behind Mike Skarbelis’ prolific scoring — recorded its first perfect regular season (18-0) in program history and finished the year 21-1 with its lone loss coming against Masconomet in the Division 2 North final.
The Scarlet Knights outscored their opposition 79-12 under first-year head coach Kyle Wood, who had served as the freshman coach from 2001-12.
N.H. TEAM OF THE YEAR: Windham
Windham won its second straight Division 2 title and posted some eye-popping stats along the way.
The Jaguars (17-2) were tremendous on offense with Andrew Lowman (21 goals, 16 assists), David Carbonello (19 goals, 13 assists), James Baiguy (13 goals, five assists), Tyler Masone (11 goals) and Matt Laliberte (nine goals) leading the way.
And the defense was just as dominant. Senior goalie Tim Erdlen recorded nine shutouts and allowed only nine goals.
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: Gr. Lawrence’s Lopez
Greater Lawrence freshman Pedro Lopez started at goalie and then was switched to a field player during the second half of several games this year.
He had eight saves and two goals in a win over the Minuteman, a hat trick in a victory over Innovation Academy and 12 saves and an assist in a win over North Shore.
Later in the season, Greater Lawrence stuck with Lopez in the field and junior Kenny Martinez in net.
MOST IMPROVED: Windham’s Lowman
After scoring four goals all of last year, Windham’s Andrew Lowman netted 21 this year. He also added 16 assists for the Jaguars, who won their second consecutive Division 2 title.
UNSUNG HERO AWARD: Haverhill’s Fitzpatrick, Pelham’s Guinasso
Haverhill didn’t have a strong year, going 5-11-2. So Casey Fitzpatrick’s performance went somewhat under the radar and he didn’t get as much ink in the newspaper as he deserved. But the senior had a heck of a year. After coming off the bench last year, Fitzpatrick started this year and scored nine goals and added seven assists.
Meanwhile, Pelham forward Eric Guinasso’s performance sometimes went under the radar because he played with star forward Harley Kearney (29 goals, nine assists).
But Guinasso had a great year himself, scoring 13 goals and adding two assists.
BEST PLAYOFF PERFORMER: Sanborn’s Howard
Sanborn’s Shaun Howard had 14 saves as the No. 14-seeded Indians stunned third-seeded Gilford in the first round of the Division 3 tournament.
Howard then made 17 saves in a 3-2 double overtime, shootout over sixth-seeded Stevens in the quarterfinals.
The senior then kept No. 2-seed Bow scoreless for 100 minutes in the semifinals before the Indians lost in a shootout.
COMEBACK PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Haverhill’s Altavesta
This award typically goes to a player, but this year it is presented to Haverhill’s Avery Altavesta, who returned as the Hillies goalkeeper coach after missing almost all of his senior year in 2012 after a collision in the second game of the season.
“I broke everything in my face,” Atlavesta told The Eagle-Tribune during the season.
“I had an unbelievable surgeon who did a really, really good job considering my cheek bone was completely destroyed — my orbital bone was completely destroyed,” he added. “My face was all dented. My nose was crooked. My jaw was a shattered mess.”
Altavesta underwent a nine-hour surgery in which metal screws and plates were placed in his face and then an eight-month recovery before not feeling any pain in his face. He also missed two months of school.
BROTHERS OF THE YEAR: Kellys of Andover
Andover senior twins Sam and Matt Kelly both were quad-captains and MVC All-Stars.
Sam, a forward scored four goals and added two assists.
“Sam’s greatest attribute was his unselfish attitude of putting his team first,” Andover coach Jim Saalfrank said.
Matt was a defender. He scored two goals.
“He was tough as nails on defense, making it tough for forwards to get by him for a shot,” Saalfrank said. “Matt was an unselfish player almost to a fault, sacrificing his body to stop shots.”
VERSATILITY AWARD: Central’s Holland
Central Catholic’s Griffin Holland had seven assists while playing forward, midfield and defense.
“He played every position for us except keeper,” Central coach Shawn Chase said.
MOST IMPROVED TEAM: Georgetown
The Royals were the Division 3 state runner-up in 2011 but had a bit of a rebuilding year in 2012, going 8-6-5. But this year, Georgetown dominated like it did in ‘11.
The Royals finished 13-3-7 and they ripped through the Division 4 North tourney, outscoring their four opponents 15-2 before losing to Cohasset in the Division 3 state semis.
STORY OF THE YEAR: Pinkerton’s Mansour
Jimmy Mansour was cut from the Pinkerton boys soccer team as a freshman, sophomore and junior but guess who was at the first day of tryouts in August for his fourth and final attempt? The fourth time was a charm.
“My mom always said I was stubborn,” Mansour told The Eagle-Tribune during the season. “I’ll always strive to be better at anything I do in life.”
The senior was the backup goalie this year after trying out as a field player his first three years.
SHOT OF THE YEAR: North Andover’s Warden
Senior defender Jeff Warden’s blast from 40 yards out was not only the only goal in the Scarlet Knights’ Division 2 North semifinal victory over Concord-Carlisle, but it was the first goal of his high school career.