Bethlehem Steel FC Continues Preseason Slate Against Junior Lone Star FC
BETHLEHEM, Pa. (February 16, 2018) – Bethlehem Steel FC returns to the pitch for its second preseason match when the club hosts Junior Lone Star FC U-23s on Saturday, February 17 at the outdoor fields at YSC Sports. Kick off from Wayne, Pa., is slated for 2 p.m. and the match is free and open to the public.
Steel FC is currently in its third week of preseason training and is coming off a difficult 4-3 setback to FC Motown last weekend. Team captain James Chambers fired home a rocket from 20 yards out to open the scoring while trialist ElvisAmoh and MLS SuperDraft selection Aidan Apodaca added second-half goals. The match featured the team making group substitutions every 15 minutes to stress conditioning and pressing.
“While we were focused last week on building out of the back and playing freely against FC Motown, we were exploited a couple times in transition so that has been a focus as we prepare for this weekend,” Bethlehem Steel FC head coach Brendan Burke said. “We want to make sure we are responsible about the way we build up the field and how we kill plays and defend against our opponent.”
This week saw Steel FC undergo changes from last week’s training. Six new trialists were added to the mix along with some familiar faces returning to Steel FC practices. After spending time in Clearwater, Fla., with the Philadelphia Union, Academy members Tomas Romero, Brenden Aaronson and Michael Pellegrino returned to training with the USL side.
Saturday’s contest will be the third-consecutive preseason that the two sides have faced each other with Steel FC winning unbeaten against the NPSL squad. Over the past two years, Steel FC has outscored Junior Lone Star FC 14-2, with Santi Moar netting a brace last season.
“We look forward every year to playing Junior Lone Star FC,” Burke said. “It serves as a scouting tool with guys like Derrick Jones having come out of their system a couple years ago. They bring in guys that might not be well known to us otherwise.”
Junior Lone Star is a member of the Keystone Conference Division of the National Premier Soccer League. The Philadelphia, Pa., based club went 4-5-1 last year while scoring 26 goals in the regular season. Last year, the club made its debut in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, falling to the Ocean City Nor’easters 3-1.