July 6, 2013 by Charlie Eisenhood in Preview with 0 comments
Two weeks of play left in the AUDL. The playoffs are nearly settled in the Midwest as New York and Toronto face off for one last time in the before they head into the postseason.
Here’s a look at this week’s games.
Minnesota Wind Chill @ Windy City Wildfire
The Minnesota Wind Chill start their weekend in Chicago with one of many must win games down the stretch of the season. Three games behind the Alleycats for the final playoff spot, the Wind Chill will need to get their first win of the year against Windy City to stay in the postseason race.
The Wildfire have reason to be confident — their only losses this year have come at the hands of the Madison Radicals. With a 12-2 record, they lead the Midwestern Division.
Unfortunately for the Wind Chill, the Wildfire have something to play for: a first round bye. They only lead the Radicals by one in the division.
Minnesota Wind Chill @ Indianapolis Alleycats
The Alleycats dominated the Wind Chill in their last meeting, and one more win will clinch a playoff berth for Indianapolis. If they do close out, they will be the only AUDL franchise to return to the playoffs for the second straight year. (Six of the eight first-year teams either folded or relocated).
Indianapolis has yet to beat either Madison or Windy City, the two other playoff teams. But Cameron Brock and the Alleycats are confident about their chances in the playoffs.
Last week, the Alleycats knocked out the Revolution and Mechanix from the playoff race.
Cincinnati Revolution @ Madison Radicals
Cincinnati has a tough road trip this week after being bumped from the playoff race a week ago. The Radicals are looking to maintain pressure on the Wildfire to keep winning as they battle for the first round bye.
The Radicals are coming off of a big pair of victories on the road, including one over the Wildfire.
Cincinnati Revolution @ Detroit Mechanix
The Detroit Mechanix will be missing their coach Ken Porter this weekend, who is away at the US Open playing for Raleigh’s Ring of Fire. That will make it tougher for Detroit to get past a Revolution team that has given them trouble this year.
Both teams are battling to stay out of the Midwestern Division’s cellar — currently, the Revolution are a game ahead of the Mechanix with two games to play.
New York Empire @ Toronto Rush
The New York Empire will head into Toronto this weekend with a showcase matchup against the Rush, a game that could be a preview of the Eastern Division Finals.
The Rush will be missing some of its stars, including Mark Lloyd and Cam Harris, to a Team Canada warm up tournament before the World Games later this month.
But the Empire won’t be at full strength either. Husayn Carnegie, among others, will be skipping the road trip this weekend. The Empire have no chance of catching the Rush in the standings, but a win — or even just a strong game — could give them a psychological edge heading into the playoffs.
New York Empire @ Rochester Dragons
The Empire continue their road trip up north with a game in Rochester. Their last time through town, the Empire fell to the Dragons in a loss that many considered an upset.
Rochester, after starting 0-4, clawed their way back into the playoff race, but fell short last week with two tough games against the Rush. But they will still be bringing a strong effort into this game as they look to continue their excellent performance at home this season.
The Empire will be looking to get revenge after a frustrating loss a few weeks ago.
DC Breeze @ New Jersey Hammerheads
Another battle of the basement dwellers, the Breeze will try to keep the Hammerheads from catching them in the standings before the end of the season. The Breeze are a game ahead of the Hammerheads, but will have to head to New Jersey to keep that lead.
The Hammerheads recently snapped a big losing streak by taking down the New York Empire, but have continued to lose since. They’ll have two more chances to finish the season on a high note.