For this article, I am going to take a look at the leaders in some of the stat categories within the VHL. The season has been underway and closing in on 20 games now, so it seems like the right time to see who are the top performers out there.
In the Goals category, we have John Locke leading the way with 17 goals in 17 games. A goal per game will be a hard pace to follow, but it is definitely possible. Locke has found his way over in Riga after playing for Quebec for many seasons, and he seems to be finding a lot of success. Fredinamijs Krigars is in a close second with 16 goals, and is John Locke's Riga Reign teammate. Talk about powerful offense. In third place is a tie between Jack Shephard and Takashi Fujimoto, both with 15 goals a piece. Then, right after them with 14 goals are Rudolph Schmeckeldorf and Theo Axelsson. The goal race is obviously looking like a very close one to call early on, and will be exciting the rest of the way. If anyone in the Top 10 goes on a tear, they will surely lead in that stat, so they will all have to hope to keep up the pace in order to try and win that individual trophy.
In the assists column, there are a couple of players sitting in first place. Both Alexander Thrower and Franchise Cornerstone have collected 24 assists in 17 games. Then, right behind them in second place with 22 dishes is, once again, Fredinamijs Krigars. Sergei Komarov holds down the third spot with 20 assists, with Rudolph Schmeckeldorf, Rudy Ying, and Casey Jones hot on his tail with 18 assists. It is looking like a hot year for passers so far.
Leading the VHL in points right now, you probably could have guessed it, is the Riga Reign's Fredinamijs Krigars. He has 38 points in 17 games, which is a ridiculous pace of over 2.00PPG. Surely, he will not be able to keep that up, but it would be thrilling if he did. Rudolph Schmeckeldorf from the Helsinki Titans is in second with 32 points in 17 games, while Krigars' teammate John Locke is in third with 31. Tied with Locke is non other than Helsinki's Franchise Cornerstone, while down in fourth place in points in Takashi Fujimoto with 30. After those five players, three are tied with 28 points, being Theo Axelsson, Chase Keller, and Alexander Thrower. 1st Overall rookie Chase Keller finds himself in good company, while fellow rookie defenseman Casey Jones is not far behind.
Now it is time to look at the big bodied hitters in the game. Theo Axelsson is in the number one spot with 133 hits in 17 games. That's a pretty massive pace to keep up with for the rest of the season. Following behind him is Riga's Phil Shankly, who has 111 hits. The only other player with over 100 hits is Seattle's Fook Yu, sitting at 105 hits. The next best player after that is both Boner and Diana Maxwell, tied for 87 hits. The league's leading hitters are coming from various different teams, while one team, the Toronto Legion, is noticeably absent.
There you have it for your league leaders in the top statistic categories. Some players have been starting off blazing hot, and it will be a wonder if they can keep it up. Tune in later on in the season for a future look at these standings.