As the USL regular season nears its end, races for playoff spots are heating up. Louisville City all but cemented its place in 2nd in the East over the weekend thanks to a 3-1 win over Charleston. At the moment, Richmond, Charleston, and New York are tied at 36 points in the East for spots 3-5, and it doesn’t seem likely that any of those three are going to drop entirely out of the playoff picture. That leaves sixth position up for grabs, and Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, and Charlotte are clawing tooth and nail to nab it. So how’d they do over the weekend?
Harrisburg visited Rochester, and you can probably guess how that turned out. The 4-0 win clinched a playoff berth for the Rhinos, and you can pretty much put a bow on their No. 1 seed for the playoffs, too. As good as the win was for Rochester, Harrisburg still isn’t totally out of it. The City Islanders are still just a point behind Pittsburgh at this point with a game in hand, and beat Torontwo earlier in the week.
Speaking of the Riverhounds, they still sit on 32 points, above the red line in the East but just barely. The Hounds finished up back-to-back games against Charlotte, who are also fighting for that sixth playoff spot. The results? A 1-1 draw last week in Pittsburgh despite being up a man for most of the game, and a 1-2 loss back in Charlotte to keep the Independence’s playoff dreams afloat. Charlotte also has a game in hand on Harrisburg, and two games on Pittsburgh. They’ll make their trip to Canada this week, playing Montreal on Wednesday and Toronto on Saturday.
Further up the table, Richmond and New York both collected 2-0 wins over the weekend to solidify their playoff spots over St. Louis and Tworonto, respectively.
Out west, things are still crazy, but Tulsa’s 2-0 loss in Portland probably shipped them out of the playoffs unless Sacramento or Orange County manage to lose all three of the games in hand they hold over the Roughnecks. (They won’t.)
Thus, the Western playoff teams look to be Los Dos, Sacramento, Orange County [sensing a trend here], Seattle, Colorado Springs and Oklahoma City in some order. Sacramento drew Real Monarchs 1-1 at Bonney Field on Saturday, which had to be kind of embarrassing, the Blues lost 1-0 in Austin, Los Dos beat Seattle 1-0 to jump to the top of the table, and OKC and Colorado Springs were somehow off without a game this weekend. The West is weird.