USL Week 16 Preview: Big Weekend for City Islanders and Switchbacks

IMAGE, NEWYORKREDBULLS.COM

by ANTHONY J. MERCED

Week 16 in the USL is filled with multiple fixtures for teams with the chance of putting some distance between opposition in the table or gaining much needed momentum.

If there was one team that needed a boost in a packed week it would be the Harrisburg City Islanders. Currently adrift in the lower portion of the table, the City Islanders will have a chance to improve their poor record with three games on Monday, Friday and Sunday.

Out West, it will be a tough road trip for Colorado Springs who plays both Portland and Seattle with a chance to draw even with Vancouver should they win out on the road.

HARRISBURG CITY ISLANDERS LOOKING FOR SIGNS OF LIFE

It hasn’t been a good year for Harrisburg. An anemic record of 4-11-1 has left them with 13 points — nine points out of the final playoff spot in the Conference. Whether or not they can turn that around may depend on the packed week of fixtures that sees them in one game on the road on the fourth of July and two home games over the weekend.

The competition won’t be incredibly difficult. Pittsburgh and Toronto have been poor this season with the Riverhounds losing four of their last five and Toronto losing four straight. Of course the same can be said for Harrisburg who have been on a nasty losing streak as well. Should there be a chance at a turnaround, the results will need to be there this week.

COLORADO SPRINGS COULD GO TOP OF THE TABLE

The Switchbacks are on a tough road trip in Seattle and Portland but wins in both games could see them draw level on points with the first place Vancouver Whitecaps 2.

Colorado Springs has rebounded after losing two straight to get a win against the Real Monarchs and hopes to put their worst run of games behind them. Both Portland and Seattle are near the bottom of the table but tend to provide fireworks for teams higher in the standings. Seattle does hold a 1-0 win over the Switchbacks from earlier in the season and Portland scored upset wins over the likes of Sacramento.

For Colorado Springs, this weekend represents a chance to change the narrative in the West where the focus seems stuck on the success of LA and Vancouver. Should they come away with wins on this road trip, the discussion will shift to how dangerous the Switchbacks are at the top of the table.

USL WEEK 16 FIXTURES:

Harrisburg City Islanders vs. Pittsburgh Riverhounds on 7/4 at 7PM
FC Montreal vs. Louisville City FC on 7/4 at 7:30PM
FC Cincinnati vs. Rochester Rhinos on 7/6 at 7:05PM
Seattle Sounders FC 2 vs. St. Louis FC on 7/6 at 7:00PM
Bethlehem Steel FC vs. Toronto FC II on 7/6 at 7:30PM
Colorado Springs Switchbacks vs. Portland Timbers 2 on 7/7 at 7PM
Real Monarchs SLC vs. Sacramento Republic FC on 7/7 at 8PM
Richmond Kickers vs. Harrisburg City Islanders on 7/8 at 7PM
New York Red Bull II vs. FC Montreal on 7/9 at 3PM
Wilmington Hammerheads vs. Charlotte Independence on 7/9 at 7PM
Charleston Battery vs. Louisville City FC on 7/9 at 7:30PM
OKC Energy FC vs. San Antonio FC on 7/9 at 7:30PM
FC Cincinnati vs. St. Louis FC on 7/9 at 7:30PM
Swope Park Rangers vs. Arizona United SC on 7/9 at 7:30PM
Pittsburgh Riverhounds vs. Bethlehem Steel FC on 7/10 at 4PM
Sacramento Republic FC vs. Orange County Blues FC on 7/10 at 4PM
Colorado Springs Switchbacks. vs. Seattle Sounders FC 2 on 7/10 at 5PM
Toronto FC II vs. Harrisburg City Islanders on 7/10 at 6PM
Orlando City B vs. Rochester Rhinos on 7/10 at 6:05PM
Tulsa Roughnecks vs. Rio Grande Valley FC on 7/10 at 7:30PM