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USL Championship Power Rankings – Week 33

By Staff, 10/21/19, 4:30PM EDT


Loudoun ends season on high and moves into Top 10 after four-game winning streak

The 2019 USL Championship Power Rankings are compiled each week by staff writers John Arlia and Nicholas Murray. Check back every Monday during the regular season to see who’s hot, and who’s not, as the biggest season in the league’s history progresses.

Atlanta United 2 Austin Bold FC Birmingham Legion FC Bethlehem Steel FC Charleston Battery Charlotte Independence Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC El Paso Locomotive FC Fresno FC
Hartford Athletic Indy Eleven LA Galaxy II Louisville City FC Las Vegas Lights FC Loudoun United FC Memphis 901 FC Nashville SC North Carolina FC
New Mexico United New York Red Bulls II Orange County SC OKC Energy FC Ottawa Fury FC Phoenix Rising FC Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC Portland Timbers 2 Rio Grande Valley FC
Reno 1868 FC San Antonio FC Real Monarchs SLC Saint Louis FC Sacramento Republic FC Swope Park Rangers Tacoma Defiance Tampa Bay Rowdies Tulsa Roughnecks FC

Biggest Movers






1 Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC
Week 33: W, 1-0 @BHM
Conf. Quarterfinals: Low Seed

Last Week: 1
The Hounds threw everything but the kitchen sink at Legion FC on Sunday as they outshot their hosts 24-3 (12-2 on target) and were rewarded in the 90th minute when Mark Forrest’s header secured a 1-0 win and the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
2 Nashville SC
Week 33: W, 3-0 ATL
Conf. Quarterfinals: High Seed

Last Week: 2
Daniel Rios netted twice against ATL UTD 2 to become the first player in league history to score 20 goals in back-to-back seasons. Nashville enters the postseason on a four-game winning streak and will be a tough out if its star forward keeps firing.
3 Phoenix Rising FC
Week 33: W, 3-1 OKC
Conf. Quarterfinals: Low Seed
Last Week: 4
Rising FC wrote itself into the Championship’s record book again on Friday night, capping its historic campaign by setting new league records for wins (24) and points (78) and extending its Dollar Beer Night record to 15-0-0 with victory against Energy FC.
4 Louisville City FC
Week 33: W, 2-1 @MEM
Conf. Quarterfinals: TBR
Last Week: 8
We may have said goodbye to Slugger Field a little bit too early as Louisville’s comeback win in Memphis, combined with losses for New York and Tampa Bay elsewhere, means the back-to-back champion will host the Rowdies to open the postseason next weekend.
5 Real Monarchs SLC
Week 33: T, 2-2 AUS, W, 3-0 SAC
Conf. Quarterfinals: OC
Last Week: 3
After a home draw with Bold FC, the Monarchs took care of business against Republic FC on home turf Saturday to ensure they will start the Western Conference Quarterfinals at Zions Bank Stadium against Orange County.
6 Orange County SC
Week 33: W, 2-0 FRS
Conf. Quarterfinals: @SLC
Last Week: 5
Orange County did what it could to try to push into the top four by finishing out its schedule with a 2-0 home victory over third-place Fresno, but the side now faces a trip to Utah where it suffered defeat to the Monarchs by the same scoreline earlier this month.
7 Reno 1868 FC
Week 33: W, 3-0 @TUL
Conf. Quarterfinals: High Seed
Last Week: 9
1868 FC secured second place in the Western Conference – its highest ever finish – with a road victory over the Roughnecks and will now watch Wednesday’s Play-In Round closely as it awaits its next opponent.
8 Indy Eleven
Week 33: W, 2-1 SPR
Conf. Quarterfinals: NY
Last Week: 11
The Eleven completed an unbeaten home campaign (13-0-4) with a midweek victory over the Rangers and will be hopeful that good home juju follows them outdoors as they prepare to host the New York Red Bulls II at Michael A. Carroll Stadium.
9 Loudoun United FC
Week 33: W, 7-3 NY
Last Week: 16
Loudoun saved its best performance of the season for last, firing a club-record seven goals past the New York Red Bulls II as it completed its inaugural season with four straight wins. That’s encouraging heading into 2020.
10 LA Galaxy II
Week 33: W, 2-0 ELP
Play-In Round: @AUS
Last Week: 15
The Galaxy II took care of business at home against Locomotive FC on Saturday night to earn their first postseason appearance since 2016. Los Dos will be hoping to avoid another quick exit when they travel to Austin for the Play-In Round.
11 El Paso Locomotive FC
Week 33: W, 4-1 POR, L, 0-2 @LA
Conf. Quarterfinals: @FRS
Last Week: 6
Locomotive FC has its Copa Tejas rival Bold FC to thank for its top-six finish, as Austin’s loss in Tacoma and Republic FC’s defeat to the Monarchs meant El Paso’s defeat in LA meant little to its final standing.
12 Austin Bold FC
Week 33: T, 2-2 @SLC, L, 1-3 @TAC
Play-In Round: LA
Last Week: 7
Bold FC will be hosting a Play-In Round contest against the Galaxy II thanks to the total-wins tiebreaker, which should be a big boost for an Austin side that recorded 10 of its 13 victories during its inaugural season on home turf.
13 North Carolina FC
Week 33: W, 1-0 STL
Play-In Round: BHM
Last Week: 18
Robert Kristo put a dagger in Saint Louis’ season with a 90th-minute winner on Saturday night and ensured North Carolina will host a Play-In Round contest as the No. 7 seed, avoiding a potential Conference Quarterfinals matchup with top-seeded Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC.
14 Rio Grande Valley FC
Week 33: W, 2-1 POR
Last Week: 22
Rio Grande Valley put together back-to-back wins just once over its opening 29 games of the campaign, only to accomplish the feat twice over its final five games of the regular season. The Toros may have fallen a little bit short, but this October run should build some confidence heading into 2020.
15 Charlotte Independence
Week 33: W, 3-1 OTT
Last Week: 24
The Independence will also be going into the offseason on a high as the side earned four consecutive victories to close out the campaign, which remarkably came on the back of a 10-game winless run.
16 Charleston Battery
Week 33: W, 2-0 MEM, W, 5-1 BST
Play-In Round: @OTT
Last Week: 26
Name a more enduring combination than the Charleston Battery and the USL Championship Playoffs. You can’t. Head Coach Mike Anhaeuser has done it again but will have to navigate the Play-In Round this time around.
17 Birmingham Legion FC
Week 33: W, 2-1 NY, L, 0-1 PIT
Play-In Round: @NC
Last Week: 25
Legion FC is the only Eastern Conference expansion side from the class of 2019 to reach the postseason in its inaugural campaign and will get to carry that banner into North Carolina on Wednesday for its Play-In Round showdown with NCFC.
18 Tampa Bay Rowdies
Week 33: L, 1-2 @HFD
Conf. Quarterfinals: @LOU
Last Week: 12
The 10-man Rowdies slumped to a late defeat in Hartford and in doing so missed out on a chance to host a playoff game at Al Lang Stadium. A trip to Slugger Field and defending two-time champion Louisville is a further price to pay.
19 New Mexico United
Week 33: T, 1-1 TAC, W, 2-0 LV
Play-In Round: @SAC
Last Week: 27
New Mexico got the help it needed from the Switchbacks and took victory against Lights FC in its season finale to eke its way into the postseason field. Head Coach Troy Lesesne’s side will hit the road for the Play-In Round but did rattle off four road victories in the Open Cup this year to reach the Quarterfinals.
20 Ottawa Fury FC
Week 33: L, 1-3 @CLT
Play-In Round: CHS
Last Week: 14
Fury FC will host the Charleston Battery in the Play-In Round on Wednesday night after suffering defeat in its season finale in Charlotte. A return to TD Place will be a welcome one for an Ottawa side making its first appearance in the USL Championship Playoffs.
21 Tacoma Defiance
Week 33: T, 1-1 @NM, W, 3-1 AUS
Last Week: 28
The Defiance were one of just three teams in the Western Conference to navigate the final five regular season games without a loss (joining Real Monarchs SLC and Rio Grande Valley FC), which should make this offseason start on a lighter note.
22 Atlanta United 2
Week 33: L, 0-3 @NSH
Last Week: 10
Atlanta’s seven-game undefeated streak came to an end on Saturday night in Nashville, which was a disappointing – but potentially fitting end – to the side’s campaign.
23 Hartford Athletic
Week 33: W, 2-1 TBR
Last Week: 31
Ryan Williams’ late winner against the Rowdies on Saturday night gave Hartford fans something to savor all offseason as the Athletic ended their inaugural campaign with home back-to-back victories.
24 Sacramento Republic FC
Week 33: L, 0-3 @SLC
Play-In Round: NM
Last Week: 19
Republic FC slipped into the Play-In Round after falling to the Monarchs on Saturday afternoon and will need to produce a response quickly after finishing the season with just one win from its final six games.
25 Fresno FC
Week 33: L, 0-2 @OC
Conf. Quarterfinals: @ELP
Last Week: 13
The best season in the Foxes’ short history came to a halt in just about the worst way possible as the side enters the postseason having taken just one point from its final five games. The good news is that Fresno won’t have to hit the road for its Conference Quarterfinal matchup with Locomotive FC.
26 New York Red Bulls II
Week 33: L, 1-2 @BHM, L, 3-7 @LDN
Conf. Quarterfinals: @IND
Last Week: 20
The Red Bulls II enter the playoffs on a six-game winless run (0-5-1) and conceded 19 goals over that stretch, including seven in their season finale against Loudoun. New York’s form is a huge issue heading into its Conference Quarterfinal trip to Indy.
27 Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC
Week 33: T, 2-2 @SA
Last Week: 35
The Switchbacks helped their Four Corners Cup rival New Mexico United on Saturday night, remarkably coming back from two goals down in the second half with 10 men to earn a point in San Antonio as it kept their host out of the postseason.
28 San Antonio FC
Week 33: T, 2-2 COS
Last Week: 21
After going up two goals and up a man in the second half at home against the Switchbacks, everyone at Toyota Field must have thought San Antonio was playoff bound. This is going to sting well into the offseason.
29 Memphis 901 FC
Week 33: L, 0-2 @CHS, L, 1-2 LOU
Last Week: 17
901 FC will be disappointed to have finished its inaugural campaign with four straight defeats and its fans will certainly hope to see more production in front of goal next season, but that being said there’s still plenty to be proud of in the Bluff City.
30 Las Vegas Lights FC
Week 33: L, 0-2 @NM
Last Week: 29
There was no mathematical miracle awaiting Lights FC on the final weekend as it missed out on the postseason for the second straight year, but Head Coach Eric Wynalda’s group made some progress this campaign and just need to figure out how to carry some of its home success on the road.
31 Tulsa Roughnecks FC
Week 33: L, 0-3 RNO
Last Week: 23
Rodrigo da Costa completed his debut season in the Championship with 13 assists, ranking second in the league behind Phoenix Rising FC’s Solomon Asante, as his play served as a bright spot for the Roughnecks all season long.
32 Saint Louis FC
Week 33: L, 0-1 @NC
Last Week: 30
A fourth straight loss was the nail in the coffin for Saint Louis FC as it couldn’t muster a goal on its season-ending trip to North Carolina on Saturday night, leaving the side searching for answers as it finished outside of the playoff places.
33 Portland Timbers 2
Week 33: L, 1-4 @ELP, L, 1-2 @RGV
Last Week: 32
After having postseason aspirations into late September, Portland will want to forget about the end to its season as quickly as possible after succumbing to five straight defeats to finish the campaign, which left it eight points below the playoff line.
34 Swope Park Rangers
Week 33: L, 1-2 @IND
Last Week: 33
Wilson Harris put on one of the most impressive late-season scoring runs that this league has ever seen, but the arrival of the offseason will be a welcome one for the Rangers overall.
35 OKC Energy FC
Week 33: L, 1-3 @PHX
Last Week: 36
Energy FC showed some fight in its season finale against Rising FC and Deshorn Brown completed a standout campaign with another tally to reach 15 goals for the season, good enough for a top 10 finish amongst goalscorers.
36 Bethlehem Steel FC
Week 33: L, 1-5 @CHS
Last Week: 34
Steel FC lost five of its last six games to finish the campaign, including a heavy defeat in its season finale in Charleston, and will likely use this offseason to shore up a defense that has let it down on many occasions over the course of the year.

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