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USL Championship Power Rankings – Week 3

By USLChampionship.com Staff, 07/13/20, 1:00PM EDT

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Phoenix, Indy continue to impress, while San Diego makes strong road statement

TAMPA, Fla. – Their victories may have come against different levels of competition, but Phoenix Rising FC and Indy Eleven sure looked good as the top two teams in the Championship Power Rankings as the season resumes.

The biggest stories – and movers – of the week? Those would be San Diego Loyal SC, which pulled off a very impressive win on the road against the defending title-holders, and Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, where Bob Lilley’s influence continues to make believers out of everyone.

We’re back with a national television doubleheader on Monday night to kick off a very busy week, so make sure to tune in on ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+. And, as always, feel free to come and yell at me on Twitter if you’d like (@NJEMurray).

Atlanta United 2 Austin Bold FC Birmingham Legion FC Charleston Battery Charlotte Independence Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC El Paso Locomotive FC
Hartford Athletic Indy Eleven LA Galaxy II Las Vegas Lights FC Loudoun United FC Louisville City FC Memphis 901 FC
The Miami FC New Mexico United New York Red Bulls II North Carolina FC OKC Energy FC Orange County SC Philadelphia Union II
Phoenix Rising FC Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC Portland Timbers 2 Real Monarchs SLC Reno 1868 FC Rio Grande Valley FC Sacramento Republic FC
Saint Louis FC San Antonio FC San Diego Loyal SC Sporting KC II Tacoma Defiance Tampa Bay Rowdies FC Tulsa

Biggest Movers

Rank

 

Team

Change

Summary

1 Phoenix Rising FC
(2-0-0)
Week 4: @OC

Last Week:
1
The competition will get tougher on Thursday night against Orange County SC, but Solomon Asante already has three goals and three assists in two games.
2 Indy Eleven
(2-0-0)
Week 4: SKC
1
Last Week:
3
As the old SportsCenter catchphrase goes, you can’t stop Tyler Pasher, you can only hope to contain him. Good luck to Sporting Kansas City II’s defense this weekend.
3 Tampa Bay Rowdies
(2-0-0)
Week 4: NC
1
Last Week:
4
The Rowdies were made to work harder than they might have expected, especially after Atlanta went down to 10 men early, but a win’s a win.
4 Reno 1868 FC
(1-0-0)
Week 4: @SAC
1
Last Week:
5
All eyes will be on Monday night’s game in Sacramento for 1868 FC, which then travels to Papa Murphy’s Park next Sunday for the first Donner Pass Derby of the season.
5 Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC
(1-0-0)
Week 4: @PHI
6
Last Week:
11
Head Coach Bob Lilley said he was going to find out a lot about his team from Sunday’s game in Louisville. We all learned the Hounds are going to be a serious handful.
6 Orange County SC
(0-0-1)
Week 4: PHX

Last Week:
6
Back-to-back games at home to Phoenix Rising FC is a quirk of the schedule, but OCSC can’t drop many points given San Diego’s strong start.
7 Sacramento Republic FC
(0-0-1)
Week 4: TAC, RNO

Last Week:
7
It’ll be a strange feeling for Republic FC playing without fans on Monday night, but three points are essential ahead of next Sunday’s meeting with Reno.
8 Louisville City FC
(1-1-0)
Week 4: STL
6
Last Week:
2
Woof, that was not the performance that LouCity believed was coming in the buildup to opening of Lynn Family Stadium. Pressure’s on as STLFC visits this weekend.
9 Austin Bold FC
(1-0-0)
Week 4: OKC
1
Last Week:
8
Bold FC will get a second look at OKC Energy FC on Monday night ahead of their game this Friday but will be expecting victory on their home turf.
10 San Antonio FC
(1-0-0)
Week 4: @RGV
1
Last Week:
9
SAFC would take great pleasure in extending the tough start for South Texas Derby rival Rio Grande Valley FC on Friday night.
11 San Diego Loyal SC
(2-0-1)
Week 4: LA
6
Last Week:
17
Becoming only the sixth team to win on the road against Real Monarchs SLC since the start of the 2017 season was a great boost to SD Loyal’s credentials.
12 New Mexico United
(1-1-0)
Week 4: @ELP

Last Week:
12
Saalih Muhammed’s goal will go down in the memory, but Chris Wehan’s late winner might end up even more important as United took a great road win in Colorado Springs.
13 Saint Louis FC
(1-1-0)
Week 4: @LOU
3
Last Week:
10
STLFC might have lost against Indy Eleven, but it didn’t fall back in the Group E standings thanks to Louisville City FC’s defeat. That makes Saturday’s Kings’ Cup clash a crucial one for both clubs.
14 El Paso Locomotive FC
(1-0-1)
Week 4: NM

Last Week:
14
Dylan Mares’ late goal capped a far better second-half performance from Locomotive FC, but they’re going to need to be better from the start against New Mexico on Wednesday night.
15 North Carolina FC
(0-1-0)
Week 4: @TBR

Last Week:
15
NCFC will hope to take inspiration from its sibling club the North Carolina Courage, who are rampaging through the NWSL’s Challenge Cup out in Utah, as it heads to take on Tampa Bay on Friday.
16 Real Monarchs SLC
(0-2-0)
Week 4: COS
3
Last Week:
13
A second consecutive defeat – and this one at home – leaves the Monarchs looking up at the rest of Group C. That makes Saturday’s home game against Rocky Mountain rivals Colorado Springs an early must-win.
17 Birmingham Legion FC
(0-0-0)
Week 4: MEM, @CHS
1
Last Week:
16
We’re going to get our first look at Legion FC on Wednesday night at home to Memphis, and it’ll be in outstanding new uniforms supporting the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. Will be a must-see on ESPN2.
18 Charleston Battery
(1-0-0)
Week 4: BHM

Last Week:
18
The Battery will get a look at their next opponent Birmingham Legion FC in midweek and opening their new home at Patriots Point should add some extra juice to proceedings on Sunday.
19 The Miami FC
(0-1-0)
Week 4: --

Last Week:
19
We’re going to have to wait another week to see Miami FC in action, but they must have been disappointed to see their rivals in Tampa Bay managed to scrape home all three points against Atlanta on Saturday.
20 Charlotte Independence
(1-0-0)
Week 4: --
1
Last Week:
21
The Independence will also have another week off before it heads to Miami to resume action, which means it’ll be paying close attention to the activities of Legion FC, 901 FC and NCFC this week.
21 FC Tulsa
(0-0-1)
Week 4: @OKC
1
Last Week:
22
With 2017 serving as the lone season in which the club has taken the Black Gold Derby series, Monday night is a massive opportunity for Tulsa to show it’s for real against Energy FC.
22 Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC
(1-1-0)
Week 4: @SLC
1
Last Week:
23
As tight as Group C figures to be, dropping points late on at home was not ideal for the Switchbacks against New Mexico United.
23 Hartford Athletic
(0-0-0)
Week 4: @NY
1
Last Week:
24
Hartford wasn’t in league action this weekend, but a 3-1 exhibition win against the New England Revolution II sounds like an ideal final tune-up ahead of a visit to the Red Bulls II.
24 New York Red Bulls II
(0-1-0)
Week 4: HFD
1
Last Week:
25
Red Bulls II’s influence was seriously felt in New York’s MLS is Back victory against Atlanta United FC on Saturday, led by Florian Valot’s winner. Defending home turf in a similar fashion against Hartford would be a good step forward on Friday.
25 LA Galaxy II
(1-1-0)
Week 4: @SD
5
Last Week:
20
Don’t let the 4-0 defeat fool you, there were some bright spots for Los Dos in Phoenix, but as hard as they’ll battle it doesn’t feel like they have the quality to compete with the best in Group B.
26 Las Vegas Lights FC
(0-0-1)
Week 4: --

Last Week:
26
After San Diego and Phoenix’s fast starts, Las Vegas and the rest of Group B is under pressure to match them with positive starts of their own. Head Coach Frank Yallop gets another week to work with his squad before that happens for Lights FC.
27 Sporting KC II
(0-1-0)
Week 4: @IND

Last Week:
27
Watching Saturday night’s game in Indianapolis, SKC II Head Coach Paulo Nagamura is going to have to have a great plan to limit the club’s former standout Tyler Pasher, and even that might not be enough.
28 OKC Energy FC
(0-1-0)
Week 4: TUL, @ATX

Last Week:
28
The hosts will be looking for their 10th win all-time against FC Tulsa on Monday night at Taft Stadium. With a trip to Austin following on Friday, it’s shaping up as a big week as Energy FC returns.
29 Memphis 901 FC
(0-1-0)
Week 4: @BHM, @ATL

Last Week:
29
The anticipation for Wednesday’s game against Birmingham Legion FC should be high in 901 FC’s camp given how challenging Group G looks on paper.
30 Loudoun United FC
(0-0-1)
Week 4: --

Last Week:
30
Loudoun will have a close eye on Friday’s game between the Red Bulls II and Hartford Athletic, with its next two games coming on the road at Dillon Stadium starting next Monday night.
31 Philadelphia Union II
(0-0-1)
Week 4: PIT
1
Last Week:
32
The Union II are going to have to be ready for Riverhounds SC’s pressure as they get ready to return to action on Saturday night.
32 Atlanta United 2
(0-2-0)
Week 4: MEM
1
Last Week:
33
Atlanta almost overcame playing most of the 90 minutes with 10 men on the road against Tampa Bay, but couldn’t quite hold on. This could be the story of the season in a tough group H.
33 Rio Grande Valley FC
(0-2-0)
Week 4: SA
2
Last Week:
31
The Toros had their chances to find the back of the net in El Paso, but now they’ve logged back-to-back defeats to start ahead of a massive clash with San Antonio FC.
34 Portland Timbers 2
(0-1-0)
Week 4: @TAC

Last Week:
34
If the Timbers 2 are going to be any threat to Sacramento or Reno in Group A, defeating rival Tacoma on the road is going to be a must on Saturday night.
35 Tacoma Defiance
(0-2-0)
Week 4: @SAC, POR

Last Week:
35
The Defiance will try to avoid a three-game losing streak on Monday night as they visit Sacramento, where the experience of Taylor Mueller and Collin Fernandez is going to be essential

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