The Bethlehem soccer team got away to an auspicious start in the opening games in the newly organized Eastern Soccer League, defeating the New York Giants here, 3 to 2 on Saturday afternoon before a fair and enthusiastic gathering and then journeyed to New York on Sunday to hand the Giants a double ration by winning the home game there by the score of 2 to 1. In capturing the second tilt the Bethlehem team fought an uphill game, coming from behind a 1 to 0 score at half time to nose out victorious. The new York game, the second half of a twin bill, was witnessed by more than six thousand fans, the biggest crowd ever to see a league game at Starlight Park.
Just before the kick-off the green clad members of the New York aggregation and the blue and white Bethlehem booters gathered in the middle of the field where the welcoming committee of the Bethlehem Soccer Booster Association extended to the members of the New York team hearty felicitations in behalf of soccer fans in Bethlehem for their stand with Bethlehem as one of the "revolting" clubs in the crisis of the former American League. Members of the committee forming the delegation were Charles Clarke, Harry Bennett, Sr., Thomas Weir, T. W. Keifer, and Gene Collins. The fans voiced their approval and whole hearted support of the entire proceedings by heartily applauding.
The game started off with a bang. From the very start it was evident that victory for either team would not be assured until the final whistle. The first tally was made after about fifteen minutes of play when Gillespie sent a hard shot toward the goal after receiving a pass from Jaap. His try was stopped by the Giant goalie, but in stopping it the goalie muffed and the alert Archie Stark, Bethlehem center forward, dashed and shoved the ball into the goal.
After this goal the New Yorkers fought hard and carried the ball into Bethlehem territory where during a melee in front of the locals goal, Bethlehem fouled and New York was awarded a free kick. Glover, hard kicking left fullback for the Giants made good his try.
With the count evened Bethlehem tried hard to beat the New Yorkers but could not solve the passing of the visitors and were placed mostly on the defensive. However, in one of their dashes onto New York territory Stark made his second goal when he shot the ball into the goal after Duncan, the goalie, ran out and left it wide open. A short time later Delaney, of Bethlehem, made it three goals when he kicked a penalty after New York was penalized for obstructing.
Fighting hard the New Yorkers continually threatened the Bethlehem goal and only the good work of Edwards, Bethlehem goalie, prevented them from making several counters. As it was Christensen managed to slip on past him for New York's second goal. At half time the score was 3-2 with New York on the short end.
In the second half the game was much like the first, there being plenty if thrills and action, but unlike the first half Bethlehem had a slight advantage over the Giants and no scores were made. The final whistle found the scoreboard still reading in favor of Bethlehem. The lineup:
Bethlehem -- N. Y. Giants
Edwards -- G -- Duncan
Barrie -- RFB -- Rankin
Allen -- LFB -- Glover
Delaney -- RHB -- Cameron
Carnihan -- CHB -- McMullan
McGregor -- RHB -- herd
Gillespie -- OR -- Hogg
Mulhall -- IR -- O'Brien
Stark -- CF -- Christensen
Jaap -- IL -- Moorhouse
Rollo -- OL -- Harrington
Referee: Mose Bloom. Linesmen: Walter and Hawley. Goals - -Bethlehem, Stark 2. Delaney 1. New York: Glover 1, Christensen 1. Substitutions: Marshall for Barrie, McKinney for Harrington.
The Giants fielded a powerful eleven which included Billy Rankin from the Ulster United Club of Toronto; Pete Renzulli, Harry Chattan and Jimmy Gallagher, formerly of Charlie Stoneham's New York Nationals. The Giants led at the interval by 1 to 0 but two clever goals scored by Robertson first and Johnny Jaap in the second half gave the points to Bethlehem.
The Giants got away with a rush in the opening play, but Bethlehem then struck its stride, and only Renzulli's wonderful save prevented a score. Clever work by Robertson on the left wing brought the ball back into New York territory, and a great pass to Gillespie brought the crowd to its feet as the center forward let fly one six yards from the goal, but a tremendous cheer rent the air as Renzulli caught his terrific shot.
In repelling a fierce attack McGregor struck down Campbell's shot in the penalty area. The referee pointed to the dreaded spot and Glover converted the kick which enabled the Giants to lead at half time by 1 to 0.
After thirty minutes of play in the second half Johnny Jaap secured possession of the ball quite twenty yards out and whipped in a shot which entered the top left hand corner of the net and tied the score. Three minutes before the final whistle Jaap tried another long shot which beat Renzulli. The lineup:
Giants -- Bethlehem
Renzulli -- G -- Edwards
Rankin -- RFB -- Marshall
Glover -- LFB -- Reid
Cameron - -RHB -- Barrie
Chatton - -CHB -- Carnihan
Herd -- LHB -- McGregor
Gallagher -- OR -- Jackson
Campbell -- IR -- Jaap
McMullen - -CF -- Gillespie
O'Brien -- IL -- Massey
Moorhouse -- OL -- Robertson
Referee: E. McCabe. Linesmen: F. DeGroff and M. Bloom. Goals -- Bethlehem: Jaap 1, Robertson 1. Giants: Glover. Substitutions: Hogg for McMullen. Time of halves, 45 minutes.
In the first half of the twin bill the New York Hakoah defeated the Rangers, 6 to 1.