The USL inches closer to the end of the regular season, as week 21 wrapped up Sunday afternoon. With the league more than through half of the season, playoff spots in the Eastern Conference are still very much up for grabs.
Matchups in week 21 saw yet another shakeup in the standings of the Eastern Conference table. The Penn FC (6-7-8) loss to New York Red Bulls II (9-6-8) saw each team remain in 13th and fifth respectively, with the Red Bulls adding some separation to the parity.
However, the spread from sixth to 13th remains steady at six points between the two spots.
Nashville SC (8-6-7) kept pace with the midtable cluster after holding Eastern Conference leaders FC Cincinnati (13-3-6) to a 1-1 draw. Notching the late equalizer away from home helped Nashville remain above the line in seventh place with 31 points. Cincinnati continues to hold a considerable lead in the conference as it prepares for Sunday’s matchup with Penn FC.
Ottawa Fury FC (9-9-3) claimed its third victory in four games after taking down Tampa Bay Rowdies (7-9-5) 2-0 at TD Place Stadium. The three points lifted Ottawa to eighth place in the standings with 30 points, occupying the last playoff spot in the table. After winning only once in the last five, Tampa Bay remains in the bottom half of the mix at 12th place.
Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC (11-3-7) returned to second place after earning two straight wins. Edging 16th place Toronto FC II (1-16-3) 1-0 at home lifted the Riverhounds to 40 points on the season. The Riverhounds took advantage of the scoreless draw between Charleston Battery (10-9-3) and North Carolina FC (7-8-6), dropping the Battery to third.
The last match of the weekend in the Eastern Conference resulted in a 2-2 draw between reigning USL champions Louisville City FC (10-4-6) and sixth place Indy Eleven (9-7-5). Unbeaten in four of the last five, Louisville holds a firm position outside the midtable logjam with 36 points on the season.
Penn FC returns to action Sunday, August 12th to take on league leaders FC Cincinnati at Nippert Stadium. The match kicks off at 6 p.m. and will be streamed on ESPN+.
Rush Soccer’s First Team returns to FNB Field Saturday, September 8th for a match with Atlanta United 2. Kick off is set for 7 p.m., with tickets available at pennfc.com/tickets.