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USL Power Rankings - Week 10

By USLSoccer.com Staff, 05/21/18, 5:30PM EDT

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No. 2 and No. 3 in rankings set for showdown in rivalry clash

A road win in Las Vegas – plus Phoenix’s home defeat to Sacramento Republic FC – means Real Monarchs SLC became the unanimous No. 1 in the latest set of USLSoccer.com Power Rankings. While that’s clearly the case given the Monarchs’ four-game winning streak, the debate as to which side is the team to beat in the Eastern Conference continues ahead of the second meeting of the season between Cincinnati and Louisville this Saturday night.

The top four in the conference standings all have their own cases to make, from Cincinnati’s place on top of the standings, to Louisville’s superior points-per-game average, to Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC’s undefeated record and the Charleston Battery’s current seven-game undefeated streak.

With Louisville having already taken victory against Cincinnati when the sides first met last month, the defending USL Cup champion has bragging rights for now but given Cincinnati’s impressive victory this past weekend against North Carolina FC the hosts have the edge in the standings and the rankings for now. As usual, the River Cities Cup clash is shaping up to be a must-see.

Riverhounds SC and the Battery both have solid home tests coming their way this weekend, too, with Pittsburgh playing host to Penn FC in the Keystone Derby Cup and Charleston welcoming a Nashville SC side that is looking poised to take advantage of its games in hand to break through a cluster of sides in the middle of the Eastern Conference standings.

While the Western Conference has taken its fair share of the spotlight over the past two weeks, this Saturday is looking like the East’s turn to shine.

The four-person USLSoccer.com voting panel tabulates 16 points for first-place team votes, 15 points to the second-place team and so forth to one point for 16th place. The accrued points among the group determines the final ranking.

Rank

 

Team/Record

Change

Summary

1 Real Monarchs SLC
64 pts | (8-1-1)
Week 10: W, 2-0 @LV
Week 11: @POR

Last Week: 1
The Monarchs have won four in a row and opened a four-point lead in the regular-season standings after its hard-fought victory in Las Vegas on Saturday night.
2 FC Cincinnati
56 pts | (6-2-2)
Week 10: W, 4-1 NC
Week 11: LOU
1
Last Week: T-3
FCC made sure its road defeat in Charlotte was merely a blip in the bigger picture as it came out with an impressive win against a North Carolina FC side that had been undefeated in four games.
3 Louisville City FC
52 pts | (6-2-1)
Week 10: W, 2-1 ATL
Week 11: @CIN
3
Last Week: 6
Louisville gets a bounce back up the rankings after its late victory against ATL UTD 2, which sets up a big week in both the Open Cup against Saint Louis and in the league at Cincinnati.
4 Sacramento Republic FC
50 pts | (6-2-3)
Week 10: W, 3-1 @PHX
Week 11: --
7
Last Week: 11
Sacramento should offer plenty of thanks to Josh Cohen for his display in Phoenix, but the victory against Rising FC moved Republic FC level on points with its Arizona rival.
5 Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC
49 pts | (4-0-5)
Week 10: T, 2-2 @TBR
Week 11: PEN

Last Week: 5
The undefeated streak is now at nine for Riverhounds SC, which might have been disappointed to let its lead slip in Tampa Bay, but they’re still in touch with the frontrunners in the East.
6 Charleston Battery
47 pts | (5-2-3)
Week 10: T, 0-0 OTT
Week 11: NSH
3
Last Week: T-3
The Battery couldn’t quite solve former player Colin Falvey and the Ottawa Fury FC defense but are still in very good shape as they welcome Nashville to MUSC Health Stadium on Saturday.
7 Phoenix Rising FC
43 pts | (6-2-3)
Week 10: L, 1-3 SAC
Week 11: @SPR
5
Last Week: 2
Phoenix did about as much as it could in attack, but the defensive lapses that left open chances for Sacramento Republic FC mean a drop down the rankings for now.
8 Portland Timbers 2
35 pts | (6-3-2)
Week 10: W, 7-3 LA
Week 11: SLC
4
Last Week: 12
Granted, the Galaxy II defense hasn’t been great this season, but that’s three wins in a four-game undefeated streak that has T2 surging into the top four going into this week’s games.
9 Orange County SC
30 pts | (5-3-2)
Week 10: --
Week 11: FRS
2
Last Week: 7
Orange County dropped behind Portland during its week off but will have been pleased to see it remain within decent range of the top two with a game in Sacramento two weeks away.
10 Swope Park Rangers
27 pts | (4-2-4)
Week 10: T, 0-0 @RGV
Week 11: PHX
2
Last Week: 8
A scoreless draw in Rio Grande Valley could feel like a good point on the road, but the Rangers have won once in their last six as Phoenix comes to visit this weekend.
11 Bethlehem Steel FC
17 pts | (4-4-2)
Week 10: W, 3-0 NY, W, 2-1 @IND
Week 11: @OTT

Last Week: NR
Back-to-back wins against teams in the playoff positions gets some quick respect for Steel FC, which has put itself firmly in the mix in the Eastern Conference again after two impressive displays.
T-12 Indy Eleven
14 pts | (4-3-2)
Week 10: L, 1-2 BST
Week 11: @NY
2
Last Week: 10
A solid point on the road against Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC keeps things moving for Indy, although a shot on goal at some point during the contest would have been nice.
T-12 San Antonio FC
12 pts | (3-2-5)
Week 10: T, 1-1 TUL
Week 11: @RNO
1
Last Week: T-13
San Antonio has goalkeeper Diego Restrepo to thank for its point against South Texas Derby rival Rio Grande Valley FC as it continues to hover around the playoff cutoff.
14 Charlotte Independence
13 pts | (4-3-2)
Week 10: W, 2-1 TOR
Week 11: @RIC

Last Week: NR
It doesn’t always matter how, just that you got the job done. In Charlotte’s victory against Toronto that was very much the case, but it moved the side into the playoff positions.
15 New York Red Bulls II
11 pts | (3-2-5)
Week 10: L, 0-3 @BST
Week 11: IND
7
Last Week: T-8
The wins have well and truly dried up for New York after last Wednesday’s defeat to Bethlehem, which leaves the side clinging to its spot in the East’s top eight.
16 Nashville SC
8 pts | (3-2-3)
Week 10: --
Week 11: @CHS
3
Last Week: T-13
Nashville likely loved the pattern of results this past weekend as it was on a bye, which leaves it in with a chance of a major vault up the standings through its games in hand.

Also receiving votes: Saint Louis FC 7, Reno 1868 FC 5, Tampa Bay Rowdies 2

Dropped from rankings: Reno 1868 FC (15), Saint Louis FC (16)

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