Team That Beats Bethlehem is Title Winner
To overcome a two-goal lead and then split for the honors against Fall River at Fall River is a feat remarkable to accomplish. Soccer critics who have visited the grounds of the Fall River team, and players and managers in the loop will agree as to the truth of that statement. Bethlehem Steel did the trick last Sunday and as a result is now favored to win the league flag. Fall River with two up at half-time and confident of victory, was shocked when the Steel Workers came back at the restart and played them off their feet. The moral effect of that brilliant rally is more than likely to have a marked bearing on the outcome of the game when the two teams meet in Bethlehem a week from Saturday. One thing is certain, the visitors will not have the moral support of loyal home town fans. Should both teams be successful against all remaining opponents, except the game in which the two rivals meet, the league winner would then be determined on the outcome of the setto to take place in this city. A victory for Bethlehem would give the Steel Workers a one-point margin over Fall River while the opposite would place the New England clan well in the lead. Levi Wilcox, a Philadelphia scribe and expert, makes no predictions relative to the winner but does pen "The Team that Beats Is the Team that Will Win the Pennant." In his comments on Sunday's game he says:
"Bethlehem's splendid showing against Fall River on the latter's ground last Sunday when they held the league leaders to a tie score was nothing short of phenomenal. Few teams visit the Fall River's bailiwick without being defeated. Yet the Steelmen, according to the report, should have won the match, the treacherous footing handicapping the great Bethlehem machine to such an extend that the players were foiled in their attempts to score on that account. The Steelmen since the beginning of the season have continued to exhibit wonderful improvement. This has been because of the clever manner in which the players have been handled. While we are not predicting anything insofar as the probable champion of the American League, et we believe that the team which beats Bethlehem to the wire will land the title. The Steelmen are really only one point behind Fall River, as they have yet one game to play to equal those played by the New Englanders. That indicates how closely matched the teams are -- and if also conclusively proves that Bethlehem must have done some tall playing to return with an even share of the points."
Challenges for Goalie Honors
Discussions on the comparative merits of players in their respective positions are frequently heard throughout the American Soccer League circuit and it is interesting to note the wide range of selection. This is due more or less to a partisan attitude of those involved in these arguments. However, few, if any, deny that Archie Stark, the Bethlehem center forward, is the most valuable player to a team and also is without a peer as a goal scorer in the last two years. However, there is an interesting discussion on at present relative to the merits of the goalies in the American League, the majority of fans willing to concede the Findlay Kerr, former Bethlehem Steel player, is at the top of the list of custodians. Some have been equally impressed with the work of Jimmy Douglas, the Newark goalie, who as an amateur was guardian of the citadel for the American team represented in the Olympics. Then there are others in the circuit who would receive a fair share of votes. If the discussion were propounded in Bethlehem. Dave Carson would certainly receive practically the unanimous vote of home town fans. If Carson is not the best, his display in the last several games at least places him in line to challenge for the honors. Comparison of the work of these two players will be interesting to watch when Fall River invades Bethlehem for the final league meeting of the season.
Might Be Invasion of Alien Rooter
It is needless to refer to the popularity of soccer in the New England district and the loyalty of the fans to their home teams. The more than 10,000 to witness the Bethlehem-Fall River game speak for themselves. Expense and time are trivial to Fall River devotees when an important tilt is at issue and it would cause little surprise if at present there is some talk relative to an invasion of fans to Bethlehem to accompany the team. Certainly a rather long distance to travel but then in the National final played at Brooklyn last year, close to half of the big attendance for that game were Fall River rooters.
Defied Heavy Mist to Get Home
The Bethlehem Steel players experienced a few thrills on their return home from Fall River, abandoning the Providence, the steamship on which the return t rip was made, at a point opposite Glason's Point and flagged a motor boat to bring them ashore. Because of the heavy mist, the Providence was not allowed to dock and while lying at anchor the players became restless, anxious to complete their journey home and if possible arrive in Bethlehem on scheduled time. One of them spotted a motor boat and flagging the owner, negotiated a bargain whereby the players were transferred to the motor boat and then brought ashore. The team was due to arrive in Bethlehem at 11 o'clock but the loss of a few minutes forced them to miss their regular train and it was late in the afternoon when they arrived.
Expect Another Record Crowd
With no other game conflicting in the New England district on Saturday afternoon, another 10,000 crowd is expected when the Steel Workers oppose New Bedford at the latter place in the second round cup competition on Saturday afternoon. Soccer fans from Pawtucket, Fall River, Providence and numerous other soccer hotbeds in the vicinity of New Bedford are expected to journey there to witness the game. Fall River will also have full sway on Sunday for the second round cup game with J & P Coats. The official attendance at the Fall River-Bethlehem game is given in the neighborhood of 12,000. There were 10,345 paid admissions and in addition to these were many complimentaries and a flock who crashed over the barricades.
Halfack Line a Marvel
The brilliant work of the Bethlehem halfback line, the return to form of Goldie and the speedy work of Johnny Rollo were some of the details expounded by persons who witnessed the Bethlehem Steel-Fall River clash as among the features of the game. "Nothing less than marvelous and the best halfback line ever seen in this country," was the remark of more than one of those who were fortunate in witnessing the contest. The Bethlehem halfback line recently experienced a change which apparently by the display in the Sunday game will now remain intact for the remainder of the season. Heretofore, "Whitey" McDonald and "Bob" MacGregor alternated at the right half position with Robertson playing left halfback. Recently MacGregor assumed the position of Robertson at left halfback with McDonald at right and these two stalwarts flanking "Bill" Carnihan at center forward have apparently brought out the desired result.