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Quote sheet: Bethlehem Steel FC 1, Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1

By Bethlehem Steel FC Communications, 07/15/17, 7:30PM EDT


Bethlehem Steel FC Head Coach Brendan Burke
Opening statement
“Very happy with the result considering we had three guys make their (USL) debut today; young goalkeeper who I thought performed really well for us and one of his saves was on excellent one at the end of the match to come out and close off the angle. Really happy that we got so many guys an intro, which is what we are all about. We were a little bit light so it’s an important result for us. A lot of the guys that we’ve called character guys stepped up today and were just that. Charlie Reymann was good, Matthew Mahoney was good, Yosef (Samuel) stepped in and did his work defensively and showed a flash or two going forward. Santi (Moar) pushed through a little bit of a grown injury and I think (Chris) Nanco carried the front line again. Really happy with the performance overall and our senior guys carried us in a big way too, James Chambers and Hugh Roberts.”

On the defensive performance especially in the second half…
“We always talk about the situation where you get pinned in and it happens in games at every level so you have  to understand how to defend in those moments and I was really proud of the length of time we were able to
endure that pressure without really giving away a good chance.”

On if there was any apprehension in playing the younger players given Pittsburgh’s offensive lineup …
“Sure especially given that they started all three forwards but it’s part of the project. Was I apprehensive? I’d be lying if I said no but I think that it’s important that they get those opportunities and I think all three of the young guys did well on the field today. They were reliable and sure there are a few moments where they lost physical confrontations but that is to be expected. The soccer part of it was good in all three of them.”

On having an experienced player like Hugh Roberts in the back with so many young players …
“It doesn’t hurt when you have a reigning (USL) Defender of the Year (finalist) back there to clean up the mess so to speak. He had to do that a few times but was in the right spot to kill them to make a play when he had to and was huge for us.”

On finishing the homestand with the unbeaten streak intact …
“This is closing out on a high note because I think it's great that so many players are getting an opportunity down in Philadelphia against Swansea and that is what we all want. We want them all to progress and we did out part up here. It’s a job well done but now we have to start planning for Richmond.”

Bethlehem Steel FC defender Hugh Roberts
On keeping the unbeaten streak alive….
“A result is very important and to keep the streak going because it’s a different game every single time. We didn’t have a lot of guys tonight but the Academy players stepped up so to keep the streak going is great and positive for the group. Everyone dug down on a hot day and fought to keep the streak alive.”

On helping the younger players in the back….
“At the beginning of the week, we kind of know that we wouldn’t be getting the usual guys and that we’d be a younger group so I knew from the start that I had to be a vocal point even though that’s been my mentality all season. Today it was important with so many young guys. From the locker room before we stepped on the field, halftime just telling them what they needed to know.”

On holding Pittsburgh scoreless in the final half while they had so much possession….
“That has been our mentality from the start of the season. We might not have started out as we wanted to at the beginning of the season but we’ve dug down and fought to get back into games. We did that tonight and get a draw is well deserved as we get ready for our away game next weekend.”

Bethlehem Steel FC midfielder James Chambers
On keeping the unbeaten streak alive….
“We had such a young group so I think it’s vital that we kept what was seven, now eight games with a big, fat zero sitting in the middle so we have some pride to hold onto and not lose games. I thought the young lads took that on board when they came on with Seth (Kuh), Tiger (Graham) and Brenden (Aaronson). Then we had guys that don’t play a lot of minutes like Josh (Heard), Yosef (Samuel) and even Charlie (Reymann) and Matthew (Mahoney) as well. We had some good performances through the team. Obviously, you want to win your home games, it’s not nice to slip points but all things considered, we’re happy enough.”

On the youth of the club….
“We are Steel FC and everyone knows that there are rotating parts every week but it was nice to be us this week because I think some of the boys put their names in for playing regularly going forward. We can only go out there and play with the 11 that are put on the field and I think we did okay. I think in the first half we were a little sloppy and the second half we showed what we can be with our backs against the wall. We have a little bit of grit.”

On any extra momentum gained by this result with such a young team….
“The streak is still there and it’s important that we try and protect it as much as possible. It’s very difficult to go to the end of the season without losing a game but it’s something that we want to have in that locker room and we have momentum. We had it the other way last year where we couldn’t win a game so we’ll take anything going forward as progress.”