Thursday, July 28, 2016

PRO Rugby Power Rankings: Denver Move First

Photo: Connie Hatfield

With one week to go in the season Denver has reclaimed the top spot in our power rankings.

1. Denver (10-1-0, 46 points; LW: 2, beat San Francisco 31-24): We moved the Stampede up this week after yet another solid performance. They result may have been close against the Rush but a lot of credit should go for a very improved San Francisco team. Denver showed once again that they know how to win close games. That is something that could serve them very well against Ohio this weekend. The big question for the Stampede this week will be if travel has an impact on their performance. Up next: Ohio

2. Ohio (8-3-0, 42 points; LW: 1; bye): The Aviators continue to have some time off ahead of their big match this weekend. Just like Denver might be fatigued, Ohio might by rusty. That said, they have been well trained all year and there is no reason to expect this weekend will be different. Up next: Denver

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3. San Francisco (3-8-0, 19 points; LW: 3; lost to Denver 31-24): Before the start of the season the Rush were expected to be one of the top teams but they struggled early on. Now they have found their form and are playing very well. Orene Ai'i has to be in consideration for one of the top players of the year along with Volney Rouse. They are even going on their big run without David Tameilau. Up next: Sacramento

4. Sacramento (3-8-0, 16 points; LW: 4; beat San Diego 35-27): The Express are also coming on well at the end of the year and picked up a well-earned win over San Diego. They too have found their groove but it comes too late. Still, there are lots of building blocks for next year and if they can add some key pieces they will be very tough to beat. Up next: San Francisco

5. San Diego (4-7-0, 24 points; LW: 5; lost to Sacramento 35-27): The Breakers slumped to a seventh straight defeat to end the season. That's very disappointing given how they started the season. There is a lot to think about over the next few months. Up next: season finished

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