Soccer in Bethlehem for the 1929-30 season had an auspicious launching when the Blue and White of the homesters rode triumphant over a scrappy and dangerous New York Giant team on Lehigh field on Saturday afternoon. By winning, 2 to 1, Bethlehem registered its first Eastern League victory in two starts.
For ninety minutes the twenty-two players suffered the cruel punishment of a blazing sun in a battle waged fast and furious from the opening to the final whistle. The Giants were conquered, but like the Giants of old, were always a dangerous combination and this was most convincingly evident when in the closing minutes of play twice came within an ace of deadlocking the count.
But just as often and more so was Bethlehem thwarted in the efforts to increase the lead, sometimes by Brown, the visitors' goalie, who took the ball off the boot of the Bethlehem forwards at the very mouth of the goal and often shots from close ranged missed by scant inches.
All the scoring was accomplished in the first half when the sturdy McGregor penetrated the net with a drive from 25 yards out and was followed shortly afterwards by Jaap. In the closing minutes of the half, Glover notched the lone tally for the Giants on a spot kick.
Bill Finlayson, a halfback, playing out of his regular position to fill in at right back, was again a tower of strength on the defense and held the speedy Dave Brown in check at all times. Another outstanding defensive player was Carnihan, whose dashing performance in front of goal was responsible in clearing two well-labeled shots. Another outstanding defensive player of the homesters was Beveridge, young goalie, who, playing under stress of injuries, performed remarkably well. The forwards function with precious with their best work probably witnessed in the opening half before the intense heat had sapped some of their stamina.
Shortly after the opening whistle the Giants broke away and Beveridge was given his first test of the game when he used feet instead of hand in clearing a shot that was sailing straight for the net. From then on for the next twenty minutes the ball soared back and forth from one end of the field to the other.
Bethlehem's first bid to score came when McGregor brought the ball down the center and, given leeway by the attention the Giants' defense was giving to the forwards, shot from far out, the ball skimming by the outside corner of the goal. Another movement similar to this one was initiated shortly afterward. Seeing an opening, McGregor again shot for the net, this time from about twenty-five yards out. Glover made an attempt to intercept the drive, throwing himself at the ball, but the sphere caromed off his body and landed on the corner of the net well out of the reach of Brown.
One up Bethlehem did not relent in her attacking methods and within five minutes Johnny Jaap contributed another goal. Stark was an accessory to the success for after drawing in the defense, he passed to Jaap. An instant before this Stark had scored but the ball was called back for offside.
Bethlehem held its lead up to the last minute of playing when during an attack near the homesters net, McGregor was called up for tangling feet with Brown and the visitors were awarded a penalty. Glover took the kick and his speedy [...] well out of Beveridge's reach. The half ended with Bethlehem leading, 2 to 1.
Fans did not take kindly to many of Referee Donaghy's decisions, especially some of his offside rulings and did not hesitate to give vent to their opinion. A foul decision called against Finlayson which was questionable and came in the closing minutes of the second half came near proving costly. When he rendered the decision he was quite some distance from the play. Fortunately, the foul taken just outside the penalty area was cleared. An instant later Brown found his effort count for naught when, after scoring, he was called up for offside.
N. Y. Giants -- Bethlehem Steel
John Brown -- G -- Beveridge
Jack Brown -- RFB -- Finlayson
Glover -- LFB -- Allan
Sloane -- RHB - -McGregor
Jorgis -- CHB -- Carnihan
Moorehouse -- LHB -- Rollo
Adair -- OR -- Gillespie
Ballantyne -- IL -- Curtis
Lyell -- CF -- Stark
O'Brien -- IL -- Jaap
B. Brown -- OL -- Purgavie
Goals, Jaap, McGregor, Glover (penalty). Referee, Ed Donaghy, New York City. Linesmen, J. H. Carpenter and Horace Williams. Time of halves, 45 minutes.
Encountering stiffer opposition than expected from the Newark Portuguese on Sunday, Bethlehem booters had a narrow escape when after trailing through the greater part of the game the equalizing goal and then the winning count was accounted for in the last fifteen minutes of play.
Bethlehem players with much of their stamina sapped by the grueling contest played against the Giants on Saturday in the heat, met a fresh and well condition team in the Portuguese and condition came near deciding the issue.
The invaders were forced to field identically the same club as of the day previous, including Beveridge, goalie, and Finlayson, right back, both of whom were injured in the Giants game. The homesters seemed to sense these conditions and showed an abundance of speed and determination.
Newark rooters went wild with delight when the Portuguese were first to score, Strong annexing the goal, a well placed shot, early in the game. Injecting every ounce of strength and skill into the game Newark was able to protect the lead up to the closing fifteen minutes of play. Johnny Jaap put his mates into the running by scoring the equalizer and then Stark broke through, beating the Portuguese backs to register the winning goal.
Trouble threatened in the final minutes of play when the fans took exception to a decision of Referee Ferrier. During a scrimmage close to the Bethlehem net the home players claimed a foul and demanded that Referee Ferrier award a penalty. The latter, however, was steadfast in his opinion and after several minutes of arguing of players and threatening gestures from the fans, the game was resumed and finished shortly afterward. The lineup:
Bethlehem -- Newark Portuguese
Beveridge -- G -- Pentland
Finlayson -- RFB -- Rebello
Allan -- LFB -- Domskey
McGregor -- RHB -- Ekeasley
Carnihan -- CHB - -Pacasco
Rollo -- LHB -- Kirby
Gillespie -- OR -- Costa
Curtis -- IR -- Conn
Stark -- CF -- Strong
Jaap -- IL -- O'Hara
Purgavie -- OL -- Scieria
Goals: Strong, Jaap, Stark. Substitutions: Watkins for Curtis. Referee: Ferrier. Time of halves, 45 minutes.