Before the largest crowd that has attended a game in Philadelphia for many seasons, the Bethlehem soccer eleven accomplished a most difficult task on Thursday in earning a victory by the score of 2-1. This is the first defeat suffered by the Phillies for several weeks in their home encounters, Fall River, New Bedford and Springfield being among their victims.
The contest was played at the grounds located at I and Tioga streets, which are an improvement over many of the grounds that have been used by this club, although it was quite evident that its capacity is very limited. Shortly after kickoff the crowd broke through the barricade and camped themselves on the touch and goal lines to such an extent that the progress of play was considerably hindered. The boundary lines were at no time visible and there were times when the spectators were standing as much as five yards inside of the playing field. Time was lost on almost all occasions when it was necessary to play the ball from touch or goal. It was another instance of the weak manner in which the game is conducted in the circuit, and it is no wonder that riots or semi-riots are forever immanent, especially if the games is closely contested.
The game had been in progress but 10 minute when a combined movement of the forward line from the center of the field enabled Gillespie to cleverly place the ball beyond the reach of Pierce. Urged on by the large support, the Phillies attacked with might and main, their overzealousness combined with the magnificent goalkeeping of Edwards had much to do with their downfall. Shortly after scoring the first goal Goldie was given an opportunity to score from close in, and it was only the masterly goalkeeping of Pierce that saved the situation. In the first half Edwards saved what might have been considered two sure goals by making phenomenal stops. His taking up of position seemed uncanny, and throughout the game he was the recipient of silent applause from the spectators.
Midway during the first half Allan suffered a leg injury which enforced his retirement, and caused the substitution of Eadie, who in the unaccustomed position of left back gave a very creditable display.
The contest throughout had every evidence of a real cup tie struggle, for every player played himself to his utmost. Stark was assigned the role of inside right and under the circumstances that he is just recovering from an attack of grippe, he must be credited with having done exceptionally well. The same is true of every other player, for it must be realized that to earn an away victory in these days of competition requires superhuman efforts.
Five minutes from the close Forrest was given an opportunity to virtually walk the ball into the net, which he did with deliberate coolness. With the game standing 2-0, there was a slight let up upon the part of the Steelworkers, which enabled McLaughlin to score a cleverly placed goal.
The enthusiasm and attendance at this match served to reveal what the Steelworkers are continually experiencing, that there is no club in the circuit that excels them in attracting attendance. The lineup:
Bethlehem -- Phillies
Edwards – G -- Pearce
Barrie – RFB – Carroll
Allen – LFB -- Gregg
Raeside – RHB – Wm. Reid
Carnihan – CHB -- McLaughlin
MacGregor – LHB -- Duffy
Jaap – OR -- Hogg
Stark – IR -- McClure
Gillespie – CF -- Wardrop
Forrest – IL-- McGuire
Goldie – OL -- Marshall
Score – Bethlehem 2; Phillies 1. Goals: Gillespie, Forrest, McLaughlin. Referee – Hayes. Linesmen – Bodo and Ruther. Time of halves, 45 minutes.