The Steel Workers narrowly missed winning the two cups last season, losing the honor to the Fall River Rovers, who in the replay of a tie game on neutral territory, this season, they easily conquered. A goal scored in the first minute of play last year won the National Cup for the Rovers last year.
The great team work and scientific playing of the game is one of the main factors regarding the splendid playing of the team. They work together like a man and while a good many of the other strong teams have resorted to the rough and ready style of play to bring them through victorious the Steel Workers have found it more profitable to stick to the finer points of the game. The Bethlehem team was also fortunate in keeping the squad in tact all through the season. They have not lost a player, either through enlistment or the draft. Most all of the other teams were greatly handicapped in having to take the field toward the close of the season minus a good many of their regular players.
The American Cup winners were:
1884-5 – O. N. T., Newark, N. J.
1885-6 – O. N. T., Newark, N. J.
1886-7 – O. N. T., Newark, N. J.
1887-8 – Rovers, Fall River, Mass.
1888-9 – Rovers, Fall River, Mass.
1889-90 – Olympics, Pawtucket, R. I.
1890-1 – East Ends, Fall River, Mass.
1891-2 – East Ends, Fall River, Mass.
1892-3 – Free Wanderers, Pawtucket, R. I.
1894-5 – Caledonians, Newark, N. J.
1895-6 – True Blues, Paterson, N. J.
1896-7 – Manx F. C., Philadelphia, Pa.
1897-8 – Arlington's, Arlington, N. J.
1905-6 – West Hudsons, of Newark, N. J.
1906-7 – Clark A. A. of East Newark, N. J.
1907-8 – West Hudsons, Newark, N. J.
1908-9 – True Blues, Paterson, N. J.
1909-10 – Tacony F. C. of Philadelphia, Pa.
1910-11 – Howard and Bullough, Pawtucket
1911-12 – West Hudsons, Newark, N. J.
1912-13 – True Blues, Paterson, N. J.
1913-14 – Bethlehem of Philadelphia, Pa.
1914-15 – Scottish Americans, Newark, N. J.
1915-16 – Bethlehem of Bethlehem, Pa.
1916-17 – Bethlehem of Bethlehem, Pa.
1917-18 – Bethlehem of Bethlehem, Pa.
No games were played between 1899 and 1905.
Brilliant playing by both teams featured the contest, the Babs playing a more scientific game than the Fall River Rovers in the National Cup final a week ago. Lance, at fullback, played an exceptionally fine game and with Napier as his first aid, repulsed most of the pressing done by Bethlehem. There were no stars on the Bethlehem team, every man playing steady deliberate football and they finally wore the Babs down where they could not stop that extra spurt that Bethlehem made in the last two minutes of the game when a corner was beautifully placed by Fleming and headed beyond the reach of Kesson by Campbell.
Captain Pepper won the toss and Miller kicked off for the Babs against a slight breeze. The Babs rushed toward Bethlehem's goal with a long swinging movement and in the first minute a foul was called against Miller for undue attention to Duncan. The Babs continued to press but were never given an opportunity to get set for a shot at goal. After ten minutes of play Holden forced a corner off Ferguson, but Fletcher cleared the kick. Forrest looked like breaking through when fouled by Clarke. At this stage of the game it looked as if the play was going to be rough, fouls were being called on both teams, but Referee Lambie administered a few warnings and both teams settled down to clever football. Towards the closing of the first half, the Babs forced another corner but the Bethlehem defense was too strong and the ball was soon out of danger.
In the first part of the second play was exceptionally even, the Babs having the first shot at goal, Holden sending past. Bethlehem's right wing then broke away and Fleming sent a terrific drive over the bar. One minute later the Babs sent the ball over the line from long range. Campbell got possession of Duncan's kickout and set the left wing in motion and once more Fleming's shot went wide. A foul against Forrest helped the Babs and they forced a corner off Fleming, but the kick was poorly placed and Bethlehem was soon in Babs' territory. A long clearance from Lance ended to Muir shooting past. Two corners in rapid succession against Ferguson and Duncan looked dangerous for Bethlehem but again the Bethlehem defense was too much for them, Sweeney being forced to shoot on the second foul from an impossible angle, the ball going past. A foul against Miller helped Bethlehem but Pepper's short was wide. The Babs were now taking desperate chances to score, Muir and Lance sending in long shots and Clarke and Sweeney shooting from impossible positions. With fifteen minutes to go Bethlehem's superior condition began to tell, Miller, the Babs' center, being forced to go to outside left and the efforts of the other forwards lacking the same snap that it did during the early stages of the game. Murphy tricked Lance and sent across a nice center, but Ratican was too late in coming up and the Babs' defense cleared. With five minutes to go Ferguson conceded a corner but made a brilliant clearance of the Babs' center and the Bethlehem forward line moved down the field as one man, Murphy forcing a corner off Lance in a scrimmage in front of goal it looked as if Bethlehem had scored but the Babs' defense managed to get the ball over the line for another corner. Fleming took the kick and sent in a drooping shot six yards out. Campbell, who was well placed, headed the ball into the net for the goal that proved the deciding factor in the game.
Bethlehem -- B. and W.
Duncan -- G -- Kesson
Fletcher -- RFB -- Napier
Ferguson -- LFB -- Lance
Murray -- RHB -- Aitken
Campbell -- CHB -- Clarke
Kirkpatrick -- LHB -- Smith
Murphy -- OR -- Holder
Pepper -- IR -- Muir
Ratican -- CF -- Miller
Forrest -- IL -- Elliott
Fleming -- OL -- Sweeney
Referee -- George Lambie, New Bedford. Goal for Bethlehem -- Campbell. 45-minute halves.
At Lennox Oval, New York yesterday, the New York soccer team successfully tacked the Babcock and Wilcox F. C. of Bayonne in a National League game, winning by 2 to 1.
In one of the most exciting soccer games ever staged at Clark's athletic field, Kearney, N. J., the strong Paterson team yesterday beat the famous Scottish-Americans by 4 to 3 in a National League contest, which puts the winners two points ahead of Bethlehem at the top of the table.