For the first time, the San Diego Sockers sit atop the Turf and Boards Power Rankings after another pair of wins ran their win streak to eight games. Things are about to get really interesting for the Sockers with today’s news that Landon Donovan has signed with the team.

The Milwaukee Wave, however, have been struggling. Ian Bennett returned to the lineup, but Milwaukee nearly blew a four-goal lead in Lakeland and then two nights later lost to the Orlando SeaWolves. The Wave are 3-2 since Josh Lemos went down with an adductor injury, but he could be returning sooner than later.

Last year we had a hard, fast Fab 4 and this year it’s a more fluid Sacred 6. The Rio Grande Valley Barracudas ascended to this elite grouping this week by beating the Monterrey Flash convincingly. Perhaps so convincingly that the Flash made a coaching change, though it is unclear whether Mariano Bollella quit or was forced out after going 25-4 with this iteration of the Flash. Replacing him is former Sonora Soles coach Luis Jaime Borrego.

Not out of the playoff race, but virtually out of the battle for first place in the Pacific Division, the Tacoma Stars have lost five out of six since being swept into the #3 spot in the rankings. An injury to Danny Waltman has further clouded their staying power. While the Stars have fallen all the way to #11 this week, they are on the short end of the MASL’s nebulous middle, where teams #7-11 are virtually interchangeable. Tacoma was the only team in the group that didn’t record a win last week.

Just how interchangeable is the middle? The St. Louis Ambush are 4-1 against the Kansas City Comets and Orlando, but were blown out by the Wave and Utica City, who were both beaten by the Comets. The SeaWolves can now also claim a win against Milwaukee. Tacoma and the Ontario Fury have been swapping places for three years.

Orlando will get another crack at St. Louis on Friday and then will have their hands full with Utica on Sunday.

This week’s schedule is light on intriguing match-ups, but the game of the week could be Sunday when Ontario visits Monterrey. The struggling Fury recently signed Anibal Echeverria, Thiago Goncalves and Victor Quiroz, while the Flash will be playing their first game under Borrego.

1
↑   
10-1
LW: 2

It’s not surprising to see the Sockers “Landon” the top of the rankings this week, riding an eight game winning streak.

2

8-2
LW: 1

Choppy seas for the Wave.

3
←→  
8-3
LW: 3

City Fried Chicken took their foot off the gas in St. Louis, while injuries and the flu caught up to them in Kansas City on the back end of their road trip.

4
←→ 
7-2
LW: 4

The Blast squeaked by Harrisburg Saturday and then destroyed Mississauga Sunday with their B-squad.

5
←→  
5-2
LW: 5

The Flash are still in first place, but the Borrega era has arrived.

6
↑  
4-3
LW: 7

Something magic is happening in the former home of the Flash, led by former Flash players Genoni Martinez and Gustavo Rosales.

7
↑   
7-5
LW: 9

Just when the Fury get a nice win over Tacoma, Adrien Perez is invited to LAFC’s training camp.

8  
←→  
5-5
LW: 8

Will the real Comets please stand up? In their last five games Kansas City has four outstanding wins, and one dud loss to the Ambush.

9
↑  
5-6
LW: 10

St. Louis got their first multi-goal victory of the season breaking the pattern of one-goal wins and blowout losses. But the blowout losses continued against Utica Saturday.

10
↑  
3-3
LW: 11

Orlando found themselves onto the MASL schedule finally (the SeaWolves have played only six games, while other teams have played as many as 12) and got back to .500 with a huge home win over Milwaukee to move into a tie for the second playoff spot in the South Central Division.

11 
↓  
5-6
LW: 6

Whether the Stars can stay in the playoff race will depend on how long Waltman is out. The Stars have lost five of six.

12
←→  
3-7
LW: 12

The Tropics are making major moves as their losing skid has hit four games. Gone are Freddy Moojen and Jowayne Laidley, replaced by Antonio Manfut, Andre Braithwaite, and Phibo Arriaga.

13 
↑  
5-5
LW: 14

Sure their last four wins have come against El Paso, but a win’s a win and the Sidekicks are still relevant in the Southwestern Division.

14 
↓  
2-7
LW: 13

The MetroStars were looking much-improved, but their horrible loss in Baltimore Sunday put them back to Square One.

15
←→ 
1-7
LW: 15

The Heat finished their six game road trip with six losses. Several of the games have been close, but Harrisburg has more work to do.

16
←→
2-6
LW: 16

The Coyotes lost their lead in the last minute to Dallas and lost in overtime.

17
←→
0-10
LW: 17

A new goalkeeper (Sanaldo Carvalho) and a new M2 affiliate (Stockton Rush), are the latest stabs at turning around Turlock’s fortunes.