New England Soccer Today

#TBT: Ponta Delgadas in Grand Final of Amateur Cup Competition (4/10/1938)


Welcome to this week’s edition of “Throwback Thursday,” where we take a trip back in time to spotlight some of the clubs that made their mark on the New England soccer landscape over the past century.

This week, we venture back to the Eastern final of the National Amateur Cup competition between the Ponta Delgada Club and  St. Gerard’s of Baltimore back on Apr. 10, 1938 at Bigberry Stadium in Fall River, Mass. The Pontas were 10-0-1 in District League play at the time, while St. Gerard’s was 9-1-1.

Note: The information provided in the following game report was drawn from the Apr. 11, 1938 edition of The Evening Herald.

FALL RIVER, Mass. – A scoreless first half gave way to a lively second half that saw the Ponta Delgada Club tally twice to take a 2-0 victory over St. Gerard’s of Baltimore in Sunday’s Eastern Final of the National Amateur Cup at Bigberry Stadium.

A crowd of 2,582 witnessed Mack Almeida and Al Cwikla score the hosts’ goals, while goalkeeper Michaels kept the sheet clean to preserve the victory.

With the Eastern crown theirs, the Pontas will face the winner of next Sunday’s Cleveland Slavias-Pittsburgh Heidleburgs contest in the Grand Final.

Despite having the wind at their backs for the first half, the Pontas’ shots lacked the finish and pace required to test St. Gerard’s backline. While the guests were able to incorporate some fine combination play, the Pontas stout defense kept them from threatening in the first half.

As the first stanza progressed, Cwikla and Almeida both found opportunities – opportunities that seemed to awaken the Pontas’ offense. Even though they failed to break the ice before the interval, there was reason for the hosts to be optimistic going into the second half.

Braga Paves Way

That optimism proved to be well-founded early in the second half. Jesse Braga sent a shot that goalie Guntrum couldn’t corral. A swarm of Pontas converged on the rebound, but it was Mack Almeida who sent the ball into the net.

With the hosts pressing for a second, the Baltimore backline was stretched to the limit. In a neat piece of combination play, Joe Travis and Cwikla. Travis lobbed the ball forward for Cwikla, who pulled the trigger on a sharp-angled shot that somehow found its way into the back of the net.

Any hope of a comeback from the guests was extinguished by the sound play of the entire Ponta Delgada XI. Playing particularly well were the halfbacks and fullbacks, with Silvia and Bowden showing themselves formidable to the challenge often.

The summary:

Ponta Delgadas: Michaels, g. Bowden, rfb. Boruch, lfb. F. Almeida, rhb. Correia, chb. Silvia, lhb. Braga, or. Duarte, ir. M. Almeida, cf. Cwikla il. Janiak, ol.

St. Gerards: Guntrum, g. Landefield, rfb. Lutz, lfb. Wargo, rhb. Labertine, chb. Michaels, lhb. Morris, or. McFaulkin, ir. Adams, cf. Bredariol, il. Finnerty, ol.

Score – Ponta Delgas, 2. St. Gerard’s, 0. Goals – Almeida, Cwikla. Substitutions – Travis for Duarte, M. Braga for Cwikla, Loring for Adams, Rapp for Loring. Referee – Whittaker. Linesmen – Chicoine and Furtado. 45-minute halves.

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