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USL Western Conference Strength of Schedule Points Projections - Week 27

The battle for the top seeds continues to tighten.

Jason Johnson and Gladson Awako are part of the historic playoff push being made by Phoenix Rising FC.
Aaron Blau/Firebird Rising

The battle for the top of the table in the West will likely come down to whether teams can win the games they are supposed to take against teams who are outside of the playoffs. Based on projections, no team in the current top five has more than two games left to play against teams who are currently expected to make it into the playoffs .

1 (Last Week – 1) Real Monarchs SLC (65.0)

Current Points: 57

Max Points Remaining: 12

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 0 – Current points projected in top 8

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 4

Elo Points: 1154 (2nd)

Control Own Fate: Yes

2 (2) San Antonio FC (60.4)

Current Points: 52

Max Points Remaining: 12

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 0 – Current points projected in top 8

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 4

Elo Points: 1143 (4th)

Control Own Fate: Yes

3 (3) Swope Park Rangers (59.9)

Current Points: 51

Max Points Remaining: 12

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 0 – Current points projected in top 8

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 1 of 4

Elo Points: 1143 (4th)

Control Own Fate: Yes

4 (4) Reno 1868 FC (59.7)

Current Points: 55

Max Points Remaining: 9

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 0 – Current points projected in top 8

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 3

Elo Points: 1166 (1st)

Control Own Fate: Yes

5 (5) Phoenix Rising (56.7)

Current Points: 46

Max Points Remaining: 15

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 0 – Current points projected in top 8

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 5

Elo Points: 1135 (5th)

Control Own Fate: Yes

6 (7) Tulsa Roughnecks (48.7)

Current Points: 43

Max Points Remaining: 12

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 2

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 4

Elo Points: 1122 (6th)

Control Own Fate: Yes

7 (6) Sacramento Republic (48.6)

Current Points: 42

Max Points Remaining: 15

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 3

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 3 of 5

Elo Points: 1110 (7th)

Control Own Fate: Yes

8 (8) Oklahoma City Energy (44.9)

Current Points: 40

Max Points Remaining: 9

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 5

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 1 of 3

Elo Points: 1108 (8th)

Control Own Fate: Yes

9 (9) Orange County SC (42.9)

Current Points: 37

Max Points Remaining: 12

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 8

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 4

Elo Points: 1096 (9th)

Control Own Fate: No

10 (10) Colorado Springs Switchbacks (38.4)

Current Points: 35

Max Points Remaining: 9

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 10

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 3

Elo Points: 1076 (11th)

Control Own Fate: No

11 (12) Rio Grande Valley Toros (36.8)

Current Points: 34

Max Points Remaining: 9

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 11

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 3 of 3

Elo Points: 1084 (10th)

Control Own Fate: No

12 (11) Seattle Sounders 2 (34.7)

Current Points: 31

Max Points Remaining: 9

Points to Hit Projected 8th: 14

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 3 of 3

Elo Points: 1059 (13th)

Control Own Fate: No

13 (13) Los Angeles Galaxy II (31.2)

Current Points: 26

Max Points Remaining: 12

Points to Hit Projected 8th: Eliminated from Playoffs

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 3 of 4

Elo Points: 1060 (12th)

Control Own Fate: No

14 (14) Vancouver Whitecaps 2 (26.9)

Current Points: 23

Max Points Remaining: 9

Points to Hit Projected 8th: Eliminated from Playoffs

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 1 of 3

Elo Points: 1040 (14th)

Control Own Fate: N/A

15 (15) Portland Timbers 2 (14.7)

Current Points: 12

Max Points Remaining: 15

Points to Hit Projected 8th: Eliminated from Playoffs

Remaining Games vs Projected top 8: 2 of 5

Elo Points: 1019 (15th)

Control Own Fate: N/A

Time is quickly running out for Orange County to challenge Oklahoma City for the final spot in the playoffs, as they currently sit three points back with a game in hand. At the same time, Reno and Phoenix have emerged from early season outsiders, to teams who are winning all the games they are supposed to win down the road. It would not be a surprise to see Reno make a run at the top spot down the stretch, or see Phoenix hosting a playoff game in the first season of their rebranding.

Hardest average opponent finish to season (West teams only):

Rio Grande Valley (1.794 points gained/game)

Sacramento Republic (1.626 points gained/game)

Reno 1868 FC (1.626 points gained/game)

Easiest average opponent finish to season (West teams only):

Phoenix Rising (1.031 points gained/game)

Swope Park Rangers (1.147 points gained/game)

San Antonio FC (1.196 points gained/game)

Now that the gap between the projected 2nd and 5th seed has dropped to under four points, it is truly anyone’s spots for the taking in that race. Will the teams with easy ends to the season like Phoenix, Swope Park and San Antonio take care of business and claim top spots? Will Reno be able to overcome of the hardest ends to the season in the West and earn the right to play at home? Let us know your predictions!