Nikita Sokov Joins 150-Game Club

by Eric Rodgers

Nikita Sokov became the eleventh active player in the Western States Hockey League to hit the 150-game plateau on Saturday, November 25th as the Springfield Express fell to the El Paso Rhinos. In the loss, Sokov was held scoreless, but picked up three goals over the course of the weekend.

Sokov joins the club tied for the most goals scored with 90, and holds the highest goals-per-game average of the group. His point production as a whole begins to come down when adding his 76 assists for a total of 166 points. Sokov’s point production of 1.11 points-per-game is shy of only Cody Key and Jakob Kranabetter.

Beginning his WSHL career with the Colorado Evolution in 2014-15, Sokov put up 99 points over the course of 90 games, before heading to Springfield in the 2016-17 season.

Sokov’s 343 penalty minutes establishes him as the most-penalized player of the group. Carter Dahl comes in at a close second-place with 278 minutes, but with the benefit of 52 more games played than Sokov to this point.

Of the eleven players to hit the 150-game mark, eight of those have done so during the course of the season, including another Midwest Division player in Oklahoma City Blazers defenseman Drake Johnson. Johnson entered the club a couple of weeks prior against the Cheyenne Stampede in Wyoming. Johnson’s 90 points with 157 games played is good for ninth in points scored this season.

Both Sokov and Johnson will be meeting quite a bit over the next few weeks as the 2017 portion of the WSHL season winds down. OKC and Springfield meet six times in a three-week span before both teams head to Las Vegas and the Western States Shootout from December 19-22.

Story by Eric Rodgers, WSHL Midwest Division correspondent. You can find Eric on Twitter, @ericrsports