The second week of MLS NEXT Pro action meant more goals—25 in 9 games to be exact—drama and teams making their mark in the league this inaugural season. Let's take a look at who made the MLS NEXT Pro Top 5 Team Rankings this week:
Despite losing the shootout to the Philadelphia Union II Tuesday evening, Inter Miami II came back from a 2-0 deficit to tie the game in the final seconds of the match. The home side scored three goals on the night as a brace from Shanyder Borgelin and three assists from Romeo Beckham ignited the offense. Borgelin sent the game to a shootout with a 94th-minute goal and capped off a resilient performance from Inter Miami II. The offense would have scored more if it weren't for the posts denying Inter Miami II several times. Last week's 2-0 win against Chicago Fire II and a draw in regulation against Union II have Inter Miami II sitting 4th in the Eastern Conference.
Previous Ranking: 4
Next Match: vs. Orlando City B on Sunday, April 10 (MLS NEXT Pro Game of the Week)
New England Revolution II did not make the top five last week, but its 3-1 win against Rochester New York FC showed it is a team to be reckoned with. Revs II remains unbeaten with the win and holds the number one spot in the Eastern Conference along with Philadelphia Union II. Despite RNY FC tying the game at 1-1, Revs II were unfazed and responded by scoring two goals, a free-kick beauty by Sean O'Hearn and the other which came from forward Damian Rivera. With another goal this week, Rivera has emerged as a bonafide scoring threat as he brought his tally to three scores so far this season. The team from New England has five goals that are tied for best in the Eastern Conference.
Previous Ranking: N/A
Next Match: vs. FC Cincinnati 2 on Sunday, April 17
This week, North Texas SC maintains a spot in the top three teams following a shootout win against former number one ranked team Tacoma Defiance. The team from Texas currently holds the second spot in the Western Conference, and they've brought a relentless, never-die attitude these first couple of matches. The visitors looked to be overwhelmed by the Defiance in the first half, but North Texas SC found an equalizer and bunkered down to keep the home side at bay. The offense wasn't shy either, as North Texas SC shot at their opponent's goal 13 times. We are beginning to expect North Texas SC to have the final say when the game is on the line at the game's late stages.
Previous Ranking: 2
Next Match: vs. Colorado Rapids 2 on Sunday, April 10
Houston Dynamo 2 top the Western Conference with six points through the first two weeks of MLS NEXT Pro following its 1-0 win over Earthquakes II on Sunday night. The team from Houston has consecutive clean sheets thanks to a sturdy defense and a high-pressing offense. Forward Roberto Avila leads the charge in pressing the opposition with 12 tackles through two games for Dynamo 2. The team from Houston also posted consecutive 1-0 wins, but if not for Quakes II goalkeeper Emmanuel Ochoa's impressive saves, the home side could have blown the game wide open. Both the offense and defense are humming for Dynamo Dos, so lookout.
Previous Ranking: N/A
Next Match: at Sporting KC II on Sunday, April 10
Tied for best in the Eastern Conference and won a shootout after a six-goal thriller, Philadelphia Union II is off to a flying start in the inaugural MLS NEXT Pro season. The team from Philadelphia again lit up its opposition after scoring three goals against Inter Miami II on the road, following two goals against FC Cincinnati 2 last week. Union II's offense made headlines again, but Marlon LeBlanc's squad kept its composure this week and performed exceptionally in the shootout in response to the home side's comeback. Defender Brandan Craig helped instigate the offense with two assists, while Union homegrown players Jack McGlynn Paxten Aaronson scored and helped control the field. Through two weeks, Union II has emerged as the team to beat so far with its electric forward play.
Previous Ranking: 3
Next Match: at Columbus Crew 2 on Sunday, April 10