Laurels for Bethlehem Soccer Teams
Bethlehem has developed another champion in the Lehigh University soccer team and the brief space of time it required to develop a collegiate team to such merit is marveled at by soccer critics. That Lehigh has a team of unusual ability was forecast two weeks prior to the Lehigh-Lafayette game when the Brown and White aggregation after a weekend lay off over the Thanksgiving holidays assembled in Princeton, N . J., and held the strong Princeton Tigers to a one goal victory. Princeton in return quite recently defeated the University of Penn soccer team for the intercollegiate honors, a distinction enjoyed by the Tigers last season. The work of the Lehigh team in defeating Lafayette on Saturday afternoon and thereby annexing the Pennsylvania State Intercollegiate title means that if the sport continues to inspire the interest prevalent during the season just closed, it would be little surprise if it becomes listed among the major athletic branches at the Bethlehem institution. It might be well to note that J. Harry Carpenter, a former star with the Bethlehem F. C., took charge of soccer supervision at Lehigh for the first time last season and although his team did not win any championship honors, it was up among the contenders when the season closed. In fact came that near to annexing the title in this supposedly junior collegiate soccer circuit that a play-off game to decide the honors was necessary and was staged between Lehigh and Swarthmore on the Haverford grounds, Swarthmore winning out by a one goal margin. The Brown and White, like the famous Bethlehems, has forced foremost recognition as a soccer clan of unusual merit, which is indicated in the reference made to the Bethlehem teams, by foremost critics in the state. Levi Wilcox, of the Philadelphia Inquirer in special comment on the Lehigh and Bethlehem Steel teams, has the following to say:
"Soccer football is making wonderful progress at Lehigh University. It seems only a comparatively short space of time that the dribbling game was an unknown quantity at the Bethlehem college. It has progressed, however, at such a sensational pace that the Lehigh dribblers last Saturday had the honor of winning the Pennsylvania State College championship for the first time in their young soccer career. A great deal of the credit, however, for such rapid progress in soccerdom at Lehigh is due mainly to the untiring efforts of well-known magnates in that city, together with the wonderful abilities of Harry Carpenter, the former Bethlehem goal keeper and referee who has coached the players into championship form. Lehigh last year came mighty near to copping the title. All that stood between them and titular honors was Swarthmore, which has won this championship on so many occasions that we have lost count. Las season the Garnets were fortunate, however, in trimming Lehigh, for the latter had all the breaks against them, which counted heavily in the scoring. After that splendid showing in 1921 it was natural that Carpenter and his players realized that they were quite strong enough to make a showing this season. The victory against Lafayette on Saturday capped the climax, particularly as Lehigh dearly loves to trim its near and dear rival, and more so when a championship goes with victory.
"Everyone interested in the game hereabouts is pulling for Bethlehem Steel to defeat New York next Sunday when these teams battle in the fourth round of the National Cup competition over in Gotham. The reason for all of this interest locally is because of the fact that nary a Philadelphia team is left in the tourney. Bethlehem is affiliated with the Eastern Football Association which has its headquarters in this city, therefore the Steel Workers are always favored by local fans, particular if a local eleven is not a party of the second part. On present form Bethlehem should return home with the spoils. While it must be admitted that this New York aggregation are wonderful cup fighters that Bethlehem team the way it lines up at the present time is better balanced than their opponents of next Sunday. The reason we figure "form" on this occasion is because of the fact that as recently as last Saturday this same Bethlehem outfit tied Paterson in an American League match while New York lost to this Paterson team last Sunday. From what we have lamped of the other A. L. teams, such as Paterson, J & P Coats and New York, we are of the opinion that the Steel Workers, now that the players have become more accustomed to each other's style of game, that they should prove strong enough, provided, of course, they have their fair share of the breaks to win their way further into the competition."