USL Rewind: Switchbacks keep up pressure

Colorado Springs is still in the chase for the Western Conference regular-season title, and it kept up the pressure on leader Sacramento Republic FC while also securing a playoff place Sunday by posting a 2-0 home victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2.

Captain Luke Vercollone scored both goals in the second half at UBC Thunderbird Stadium. The Switchbacks needed some time to break through against 10 men after Matthew Baldisimo was sent off for a bad foul on Vercollone in the 17th minute, and took the lead when Vercollone’s diving header from a Jordan Burt cross found net in the 59th minute. Vercollone scored his sixth goal of the season in the 86th minute, with Yaw Danso earning the assist.

Colorado Springs (13-8-7, 46 points) is two points back of Sacramento (13-6-9) with two games to play. VWFC2 is fourth at 11-8-9 (42 pts.) and battling for a home game in the first playoff round allotted to the top four finishers in each conference.
 
TOROS IN DESPITE LOSS TO TIMBERS. Rio Grande Valley FC nailed down its playoff place without playing thanks to a 2-0 defeat of Real Monarchs SLC by Orange County Blues FC on Friday, and the next night Portland Timbers 2 took advantage.

A 1-0 victory at Toros Stadium ended RGVFC’s 10-game unbeaten streak and kept alive playoff hopes for T2, which parlayed a goal by Brent Richards and four saves from keeper Wade Hamilton into a victory that ended a run of three straight road losses.

Rio Grande Valley (12-6-9, 45 pts.) trails Sacramento by three points but has a game in hand. Timbers 2 (9-14-4) also has three games remaining and probably needs to win all of them to crack the top eight.
 
CHARLOTTE IS CHUGGING ALONG. David Estrada headed home the second and third goals in a 4-0 Charlotte Independence victory over Pittsburgh Riverhounds that is its seventh in the last 10 games.

Brian Brown scored the first goal and Jorge Herrera tallied in stoppage time as Charlotte improved to 14-7-6 and 48 points. It is fourth with three games to play and still probably needs at least a few more points to secure a top-four spot and first-round home playoff game. Pittsburgh (6-16-5, 23 pts.) is tied for last place with FC Montreal.

USL Leading Scorers:
G PLAYER, TEAM
15 Sean Okoli, FC Cincinnati
15 Jack McBean, LA Galaxy II
14 Chandler Hoffman, Louisville City
14 Irvin Herrera, St. Louis FC
13 Brandon Allen, NY Red Bulls II
12 Corey Hertzog, Pittsburgh
11 Kyle Greig, Whitecaps FC 2
11 Cameron Iwasa, Sac Republic FC
11 Michael Cox, Orlando City B
10 Christian Volesky, Rochester
10 Sammy Ochoa, Tulsa

USL:
Results | Standings | Schedule



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