The NWL regular season plays ends on August 16th, but there are many meaningful games in the next week. Both the North and South Divisions of the NWL are tight, as eight teams have opportunities to make the 2010 playoffs. The winner or the North and South 2nd Half will join the Rochester Honkers and Eau Claire Express as they won the 1st Half race.
The North Division is currently led by the Willmar Stingers with an 18-11 record while the St. Cloud River Bats are 0.5 games back. Willmar, who is in their inaugural season, is 6-4 in their last ten games while St. Cloud is also 6-4. The Stingers remaining schedule consists of Brainerd (3), Alexandria (2) and Thunder Bay (3). The River Bats remaining games are against Mankato (2), Brainerd (2), and Rochester (3). Both Duluth and Brainerd are currently 2.0 games back while the Honkers are 2.5 games back, but have the 1st Half playoff berth.
The South Division has the Eau Claire Express, 1st Half Champions, leading the way with 21-8 record. The Wisconsin Woodchucks and Madison Mallards sit 2.5 games behind the Express and are tied for second place. La Crosse sits just 3.0 games back of the leaders while Green Bay is 4.0 games back. The Loggers have the hardest remaining schedule with three games sets with both the Mallards and the Woodchucks while the Bullfrogs play Battle Creek (3) and Madison (3). Although the Express currently lead the South Division, the team with the best record, aside from Eau Claire, will be the South Division playoff representative.
The Rochester Honkers and Eau Claire Express have their tickets punched to the 2010 playoffs, but the next few days will determine their opponents. Be sure to follow to NWL at www.nwltickets.com as these playoff races tighten up over the next week.