Rivalry Week – San Diego vs Los Angeles
Rivalry Match Up 2
San Diego Growlers (6W – 6L) at Los Angeles Aviators (4W – 8L)
Saturday July 18th, 7:30 pm at Occidental College Patterson Field in Los Angeles CA
Los Angeles Aviators at San Diego Growlers
Sunday July 19th, 1:00 pm at Serra High School in San Diego CA
Despite the close proximity of these two cities, there isn’t a famous sports rivalry featuring San Diego and LA in the major sports world. In the NHL, it’s Sharks vs Kings, and in the NBA, it’s Lakers vs Knicks. The Padres could claim either the Angels or the Dodgers as their rival but neither rivalry is as big as Dodgers vs Giants. Perhaps it’s because San Diego doesn’t have an NHL or NBA team, and LA has been without an NFL team since 1994. Or it could be because everyone loves to hate LA. With the Los Angeles Aviators and San Diego Growlers meeting each other 4 or 5 times every AUDL season, you can bet Aviators vs Growlers will grow into a lasting sports rivalry.
Even for a new sports league like the AUDL, the San Diego-LA matchup is really young. Both teams are 2015 expansion franchises playing in their first season. Both teams came into the 2015 season with something to prove. Any rivalry needs time and history to grow, and this weekend’s two game series will go a long way to intensify the rivalry between these two closely paired teams. Playoff hopes are on the line for San Diego and LA hopes to play spoiler. San Diego just ended LA’s playoffs chances with a 1 point win against them the week before, and now San Diego has to win two more on the same weekend to stay in the hunt.
San Diego leads the season series 2 games to 1. After starting the season 0 – 5, which included a loss to LA in their second game, San Diego has cruised to a 6 and 6 record going 6 and 1 in their last 7 games. During that time they beat LA in the AUDL Game of the Week week 9, and won back to back games on the road against Vancouver and Seattle. They are the only team in the West to win a Sunday game against one of the top three teams in the division. If they do make the playoffs, they have a legitimate chance of winning both playoff games and heading to the AUDL championships.
Standing in their way is a LA team that has a lot to prove. While San Diego got the most press with their out of market player signings, LA quietly built a home grown team that has out performed expectations. But an 0 and 2 record this weekend would send them right back down to the bottom of the Western Conference standings. Plus, LA can still claim the season series title and tie San Diego in the overall standings with a two game sweep. With pride on the line and a chance to end the playoff hopes for San Diego, you can bet LA will be highly motivated to take at least 1 of 2 this weekend.