Bethlehem Within Striking Distance
When the Bethlehem Steel F. C. hit a slump several weeks ago and dropped three consecutive games few fans were willing to concede them a chance in the American Soccer League race and yet today the Steel Workers are runners up to Fall River, the National champions, trailing the league leaders by a margin of 2 points. Providence put a crimp in the works yesterday afternoon when they held Fall River to a scoreless draw and as a result the Steel Workers are but one game behind the champions. Rivalry must have been intense in this game for in the account mentioned is made that half a dozen players were banished. Apparently fisticuffs were an important adjunct of the contest.
Not Eligible for Cup Competition
Dropping one point in the cup race not only jeopardizes Fall River's chances in winning the second straight American League pennant, but also their chances to repeat in the cup competition. Players eligible for this soccer classic must appear in two successive league games before reinstatement is possible. That is if the restrictions are similar to those which dominate in the National Cup tie and for which there is no reason to be different. Names of those were not mentioned but reference made that among the half dozen players banished were several stars. Should these players be ineligible Fall River may have a hard time disposing of Boston in the American League cup final to be played at Fall River next Sunday. The action of the league in regards to the status of the players will be watched with interest.
Both Clubs Have Eight More Games To Play
Eight more games are listed for both Bethlehem Steel and Fall River before the league season comes to a close and of these the Steel Workers probably have the hardest road to travel. Fall River has concluded with all the New England teams, conceded next to Bethlehem the strongest in the circuit. The champions have also concluded with Brooklyn one of the strongest clubs in this district. Therefore the teams remaining on the schedule are Giants, Indiana, Fleisher, Newark and Philadelphia F. C. In this list Fleisher, plying Fall River in Philadelphia, looks like the best bet to put the Steel Workers in the running. Bethlehem's games before the season close are Coats, Giants, Boston, Indiana, Fleisher, Philadelphia and Providence. Three of this number are scheduled for the home grounds, including Coats and Boston.
Throwing Philadelphia Games to Fall River
While it is hardly likely that the Philadelphia F. C. could upset the stride of the Fall River club if the game were played in Philadelphia, the Phillies are passing up the opportunity of meeting the champions on their home grounds and the league has sanctioned the transfer of the game to Tiverton, the home grounds of Fall River. The transfer, it is understood, is optional with the clubs involved and Philadelphia has accepted. In handing out favors the league executives certainly have not slighted Fall River this season.