File photo. Alex Newhook gets a shot off at The Q Centre. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

© Copyright – 2018 – Victoria Sports News

The Victoria Grizzlies are off to another strong start during the 2018-2019 British Columbia Hockey League season, going 7-3.

They lead the Island Division and currently, the only apparent threat is the Powell River Kings with a 6-3 record and one game in-hand. The Alberni Valley Bulldogs, Nanaimo Clippers and Cowichan Valley Capitals are slugging away with 6, 4 and 4 points respectively. The Bulldogs have three wins, while the Clippers have managed just two and the Capitals have one win in their first nine games.

The Grizzlies are getting it done with offence. The only team with more goals so far this season are the Merritt Centennials with 39; the Grizzlies have scored 37, so far.

The Grizzlies’ win percentage is second overall at .700, only the Chilliwack Chiefs are better at .727 with their 8-3-0 record during their first 11 games.

Last year’s BCHL rookie sensation Alex Newhook leads the Grizzlies with 13 points. He has scored four times and set up nine others. He is currently eighth in the league’s regular season points race.

Alex Campbell has 6 goals and 6 assists and sits second on the team and 12th in the league to lead a well-balanced attack.

Kurtis Chapman has played all 10 games. In that time he has earned a .947 save percentage which is first overall in the BCHL, his Goals Against Average (GAA) is second at 1.97 and has earned a shutout already.

He has played the second most minutes so far this season of the top-10 goaltenders in the league.

The Airdrie, AB native has already played half the total games he played last year, where he accumulated a record of 12-3-3. He has knocked nearly a goal-per-game off of his average and improved his save percentage from .930 to .947.

The Grizzlies are coming off of a 4-3 win in Prince George at the Rolling Mix Concrete Centre Friday night.

The Grizzlies scored three first period goals, and then the Spruce Kings scored three during the second to tie the game. Newhook would net the winner at 11:54 of the third period from Riley Hughes.

The powerplays would go 1/6 for the Grizzlies and 0/5 for the Spruce Kings.

The Grizzlies have two more road games on this trip before returning home to The Q Centre Oct. 12 with a game against the Bulldogs. Saturday, the Grizzlies visit Salmon Arm and Sunday – their third game in three days – they will visit West Kelowna.