CONCORD (CBS) – His highlight reel soccer goal would have been the talk of the town anyway, but the fact that Concord-Carlisle senior Nico Calabria was born with only one leg makes it that much more amazing to watch.
Calabria, who plays on crutches because he says prosthetics weigh him down, was on the field during a varsity game against Newton South on Wednesday when a corner kick came his way.
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One unbelievable-to-watch scissor kick later, the ball was in the back of the goal, thanks to quite an athletic feat.
“The goal was so surreal,” he said. “The fact that it happened and exploded so fast it took me by surprise.”
It was Calabria’s first goal of the season, and his team went on to win 9-0.
Calabria has been playing soccer all his life. It’s his first year on the varsity team.
Nico says when he’s out on the soccer field he can dribble, volley, and run just like everyone else.
“Obviously, I don’t have the speed or the agility of most of the players on the field, but my strengths are distribution and my vision, because that does not require any speed, that just requires knowledge of the game,” he said.
Nico also realizes his disability is also his greatest gift.
“I want to be a role model for any people who are down on their disability. This is me,” he said.
And in fact, this goal wasn’t even Calabria’s biggest feat.
When he was only 13, he became the first person with one leg ever to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro. He raised more $100,000 for charity.
“Definitely bigger accomplishment would be Mt. Kilimanjaro only because that was not for myself, it was for people with disabilities in Africa – raising money for wheelchairs,” he said.
Calabria’s team plays in a charity match for cancer on Saturday, September 29. For information, click here.