A week that saw eight total games played in the West resulted in the top two continuing their run away from the rest of the pack, and a newcomer to the top five. As teams continue to try to break away from a very tight middle of the pack, we look ahead to another week that will be muddled by US Open Cup play.
1 (Last week – 1) San Antonio FC (1151)
It wasn’t a pretty win, but San Antonio was able to grind out another 1-0 result, their fourth of the season, to keep the race for the top team in the West a tight one.
2 (2) Real Monarchs SLC (1151)
The Monarchs extended their unbeaten run, but giving up a late goal to Vancouver cost Salt Lake outright ownership of the top Elo spot as they had to again settle for a tie.
3 (3) Tulsa Roughnecks (1110)
Tulsa became the latest victim of a hot Reno team in the middle of the week, before dispatching a struggling Portland side over the weekend to maintain a top-three spot. They did this despite losing Elo points.
4 (5) Rio Grande Valley Toros (1106)
The Toros did not play, but moved up the table as higher ranked teams faltered. They start a two-game road trip this week after playing their previous five at home.
5 (9) Reno 1868 (1104)
Reno continued a run in the middle of the week by blowing out Tulsa, before giving up a goal in the final minutes of the match to draw Colorado Springs in the same method for the second time this season.
6 (4) Swope Park Rangers (1102)
Swope Park gave a valiant effort, but was unable to break through a rock-solid San Antonio defense. They play them a second time this week as they look for revenge and to hand them their first loss of the season.
7 (6) Orange County SC (1102)
Orange County did not play, and lost a spot while remaining just a hair above average, based on Elo. The up-and-down team starts a four-game home stand this week.
8 (7) Sacramento Republic (1099)
It took late-game heroics after almost giving away the game, but Sacramento salvaged a road draw to stay at the middle of the Elo pack, as they have now played eight of eleven games on the road to start the season.
9 (12) Phoenix Rising (1092)
Phoenix’s second match since dealing with injuries to two critical players was a well-played win that saw them take down a perennial playoff side in Los Dos, 2-1. How they respond to their losses will decide their fate this season.
10 (8) Vancouver Whitecaps 2 (1091)
A late goal made it close and had repercussions at the top of the Elo table, but Vancouver has now lost four of their past six games. They will look to turn it around against a struggling Portland side this week.
11 (10) Oklahoma City Energy (1088)
The Energy got back on the right track with a win over cellar dwellers Portland, but will need to start picking up points against top teams if they want to make a run up the table.
12 (11) Seattle Sounders 2 (1086)
Seattle looked to be come-from-behind winners, but a late defensive lapse resulted in them dropping two points and recording only a draw, as they tried to regroup from a blowout the previous week.
13 (13) Colorado Springs Switchbacks (1082)
Late game heroics for the Switchbacks continued as they had three second half goals, including one in the dying minutes, to earn a second draw against Reno this season.
14 (14) Los Angeles Galaxy II (1073)
Los Dos continues to struggle as they dropped a 2-1 game to Phoenix. If Los Angeles does not soon recover they will risk missing the playoffs for the first time in club history.
15 (15) Portland Timbers 2 (1051)
Portland dropped two more matches this week but got on the scoreboard in each match. If the Timbers can continue to put the ball in the back of the net, the skid will end eventually.
Week 11 Matches:
#13 Colorado Springs Switchbacks (1082) v #11 Oklahoma City Energy (1088)
#7 Orange County SC (1102) v #2 Real Monarchs SLC (1151)
#1 San Antonio FC (1151) v #6 Swope Park Rangers (1102)
#12 Seattle Sounders 2 (1086) v #14 Los Angeles Galaxy II (1073)
#8 Sacramento Republic (1099) v #4 Rio Grande Valley Toros (1104)
#15 Portland Timbers 2 (1051) v #10 Vancouver Whitecaps 2 (1091)
Bye Week: #3 Tulsa Roughnecks, #5 Reno 1868 (1104), #9 Phoenix Rising (1092)
San Antonio and Real Monarchs continue to blow away the rest of the West, but both will have another test this week. San Antonio gets a rematch against Swope Park who gave them a run for their money, and Real Monarchs will play an Orange County side who, when they are on, will give any team in the league a run for their money.
Will we finally see a change at the top of the table? Who is most likely to make a breakaway from the big pack in the middle of the table and solidify their spot as a top team? Let us know in the comments below!