Another week and another brief scare for Seattle, but the streak lives on. Nevertheless, we were very tempted to move FC Kansas City ahead of Seattle this week. While Seattle have looked vulnerable in recent weeks, FC Kansas City has simply been dominant. The August 2nd meeting between these teams simply cannot come fast enough.
However, we stick with Seattle at the top of the rankings – it is difficult to justify toppling an undefeated side after all.
Other notable events from the past week were the first NWSL goals for Christen Press and Sarah Hagen as both players picked up a brace for their teams. The collective results mean no change to last week’s rankings; the first time that has happened this season.
As the end of the season rapidly approaches, Seattle and FC Kansas City draw ever closer to clinching playoff spots while the rest of the table remains as unclear as ever.
Here are the Orange in the Oven NWSL power rankings for week 13 (see last week’s rankings here):
1. Seattle Reign FC (13-0-3), 1st Place (Last Week – 1)
Twice in one week Seattle fell behind in matches. In both instances, however, they fought back and scored late to win. At this point in the season, Seattle doesn’t seem to start playing until after they concede a goal.
Naho Kawasumi won a well deserved player of the week award after scoring twice against Boston over the weekend in hauling Seattle back for the win. Jessica Fishlock scored the winner over Western New York, but the real story there was the return of Megan Rapinoe who had the assist on the goal.
Week 14 Schedule: Seattle hits the road to face the Chicago Red Stars this weekend.
2. FC Kansas City (10-4-3), 2nd Place (Last week – 2)
FC Kansas City traveled to face a Sky Blue side that was coming off of a pair of good results and absolutely decimated them. Everyone got in on the action as FCKC knocked home five goals. Just as importantly, it was yet another shutout victory. Since May 25th, FC Kansas City has conceded only one goal.
Sarah Hagen scored her first goals of the season in the win. Hagen gives FCKC a ridiculous number of offensive weapons. It hardly seems fair for other teams.
Week 13 Schedule: FC Kansas City travel to Portland for a weekend meeting with the Thorns.
3. Western New York Flash (7-8-2), 3rd Place (Last week – 3)
The Flash did it again. For the third time this season they had a lead over Seattle but could not close the deal. Despite their 2-1 loss to Seattle, Western New York moved up the table into 3rd place by virtue of their 4-1 dismantling of Houston over the weekend.
The performance against the Dash was clinical, something not often seen out of Western New York this season. Samantha Kerr continues to be dangerous and Carli Lloyd is in good form.
Week 14 Schedule: The Flash begin a three match home stand this weekend when they host the Washington Spirit.
4. Chicago Red Stars (6-6-3), 4th Place (Last week – 4)
Chicago was back in action on July 4th against Portland. Christen Press lead a 2nd half comeback with a brace, including the tying goal in the final 10 minutes of play. The result marked six matches in a row without a win, however.
Chicago’s once impenetrable defense has conceded an average of 2.0 goals per match over the past five matches. Press brings more offensive impetus, but if the Red Stars cannot rediscover the defensive form that made them so difficult to score against over the first 9 matches of the season, a playoff spot may be a tall ask.
Week 14 Schedule: A double week at home for Chicago this week, first hosting a return leg against Portland followed by a visit from Seattle Reign FC.
5. Washington Spirit (7-7-2), 5th Place (Last week – 5)
Washington’s recent struggles continued this week against Boston. Playing at home, they conceded three goals in a crazy and controversial match that ended in a 3-3 draw. Diana Matheson’s penalty in stoppage time saved Washington from the loss.
With the teams around them generally not faring much better, Washington only slipped to 5th place in the table this week.
Week 14 Schedule: The Spirit face Western New York in Rochester this weekend.
6. Portland Thorns FC (6-6-2), 6th Place (Last week – 6)
Part of the general status quo in the table this week – Portland drew as well, 2-2 with Chicago. It was a disappointing outcome for the Thorns as they held a 2-0 lead at one point in the match.
Tobin Heath made her first appearance for Portland this season against Chicago but it did not help results any. Portland’s continued struggles despite the strength of roster are mystifying to say the least.
Week 13 Schedule: Portland has a follow up date at Chicago on Wednesday then a home match against FC Kansas City this weekend.
7. Sky Blue FC (3-7-7), 7th Place (Last week – 8)
After five hours of sitting around and waiting on Wednesday night, Sky Blue finally had to postpone their match against Houston. Whether that had any impact on their weekend performance or not is unclear, however they were destroyed by FC Kansas City, 5-0.
The loss reversed what had been a good run of results in the previous week. Given they have played two more matches than the teams ahead of them, Sky Blue’s chances of a return to the playoffs are looking increasingly remote.
Week 14 Schedule: Sky Blue has the week off.
8. Houston Dash (4-10-1), 8th Place (Last week – 8)
It was not a good week for Houston. Their five hour wait for a match that never happened at Sky Blue was followed by a nightmarish 17 hour trip back to Houston. Perhaps as a result, the Dash came out flat against Western New York and were picked apart.
Just a few weeks ago, the Dash looked like they might make an improbable run to get into the playoff mix. Now, they are in danger of slipping back into last place if they cannot rediscover their form.
Week 14 Schedule: An important battle for last place with Boston looms on Friday at the Oven.
9. Boston Breakers (3-11-2), 9th Place (Last week – 9)
Boston suddenly is looking a bit ore competitive. They nearly beat Washington and gave Seattle a good scare last week. Jazmine Reeves has given the Breaker a boost of energy with her five goals.
If Boston continues to battle, they might actually get out of last place soon.
Week 14 Schedule: A win at Houston on Friday would boost Boston out of last place.