Steel FC Returns Home for September Showdown Against Penn FC
Steel FC return home looking to capture franchise record for wins in a season
BETHLEHEM, Pa. (August 31, 2018) – After claiming 15 points in August and rising up the Eastern Conference table, Bethlehem Steel FC looks to take another step closer to an USL Cup playoff appearance when it hosts Penn FC on Sunday, September 4. Kick off from Goodman Stadium on the campus of Lehigh University is scheduled for 3 p.m. and will be broadcast live on Service Electric and ESPN+.
Steel FC enters having won six of its last seven contests, picking up the most points in the league since July 29. The club returns to the Lehigh Valley after a thrilling 2-1 victory on the road at Nashville SC. After jumping out to the lead on a Chris Nanco strike from distance, Steel FC responded in the game’s final moments with a goal from Philadelphia Union midfielder Adam Najem to conclude August with another win.
“It was a good away win for us,” Bethlehem Steel FC head coach Brendan Burke said. “It just continues the momentum and it doesn’t matter how young we go or how much we rotate, right now we are into a really good rhythm as a group.”
The contest could be a historic one for Steel FC as the club looks to rewrite yet another record. Having already set new single-season marks for goals, assists and consecutive road shutout minutes, a victory would win set a new mark for single-season wins and home wins.
Sunday is the second and final regular season contest against Penn FC, with Steel FC looking to avenge a 3-2 road loss in early July. Fabian Herbers tallied a brace in the road contest but three-straight strikes from Penn FC lifted the home side to the result. Overall, the Harrisburg-based side owns a 4-2-1 series lead.
Sitting in 11th spot on the Eastern Conference table, Penn FC is coming to the Lehigh Valley having won just one of its last five matches. That win came last weekend on the road at Ottawa Fury FC, picking up a 2-0 shutout with Aaron Dennis and Paulo Junior providing the offense. Lucky Mkosana leads Penn FC’s attack having scored nine goals in 20 appearances while goalkeeper Romuald Peiser has earned 37 saves and four shutouts. One player to watch is forward Tommy Heinemann who has returned from injury after missing the first contest against Steel FC.
“He’s big and a handful and he’s good in the air,” Burke said of the veteran forward. “He runs hard off the ball and runs hard on the defensive side of the ball. I think he allows them to be a little more aggressive as a group, especially if he’s paired with Lucky [Mkosana] or someone like that. Aaron Dennis is in decent form right now. They have a lot of good options across the front and have a number of different combinations that they can throw at you.