North Iowa forward Campion signs NAHL tender
The North Iowa Bulls, former members of the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL), are excited to announce that forward Jack Campion has signed an NAHL tender with the Johnstown Tomahawks of the NAHL's East Division. Campion becomes the fourth North Iowa player from the 2020-21 NA3HL season to sign an NAHL tender.
As the Bulls move up to the NAHL, Campion will have a chance to do the same with a well-established team in the league’s East Division. The Tomahawks entered the league in 2012 and quickly established themselves as one of the circuit’s top-drawing teams, placing in the top six in attendance every season. Prior to the Tomahawks’ arrival nine years ago, the Cambria County War Memorial Arena had hosted minor-league professional hockey almost continuously since 1950, and the legendary hockey movie “Slap Shot” was filmed in the Tomahawks’ home arena.
“The main attraction to me was the coaching staff. They have plenty of experience and a lot of success in the league,” said Campion. “They have, year in and year out, helped countless players move on to compete at the next level. Their facilities are second-to-none – their rink, locker room and off-ice facilities are incredible. It’s easy to see how their organization is so successful. I’m extremely excited to be a part of the organization and get to work.”
Campion quickly established himself in a market familiar with junior hockey this past season, attending the Bulls’ main tryout camp in Mason City last August. However, he started the season in the NAHL, playing a single game in mid-October for the Minot Minotauros. Campion joined the Bulls’ roster in time for an October 23 tilt at the Willmar WarHawks – it took him less than seven minutes to get acquainted with his teammates, scoring a power play goal on just his third shift as a Bull.
It was a sign of good things to come, with the Crystal, Minnesota native racking up a point a game over 33 appearances in a North Iowa uniform. While never overpowering, he was as consistent as ever down the stretch, notching a point in 12 of his last 15 regular-season appearances. He went quiet in the West Division playoffs, posting just one point in six outings, but Campion saved his best for last, with five points in four games at the Fraser Cup championship tournament. Two of his three goals in the tournament were game-winners.
At the prep level, Campion was a star for the Armstrong/Cooper High School program, posting 106 points for the Wings over a three-year varsity career. 65 of those points came in his senior season, coming up just one goal short of finishing his high school career with the program’s first-ever state tournament appearance after a double-overtime loss to Delano in the section finals.
The standard will be high as he heads to the Keystone State – the Tomahawks have won two of the last three East Division championships, and were in the hunt for the 2020 division championship in mid-March when the remainder of the NAHL season was halted by the league’s COVID shutdown. Johnstown heads into the new season with 13 alumni set to suit up for NCAA Division I teams.
In North Iowa’s 10 years as an NA3HL member, 42 Bulls players have signed tenders to continue their careers with NAHL teams, and more than 50 players have suited up at the NAHL level after wearing a North Iowa sweater. Nine of those players have gone on to play for NCAA Division I programs.
A tender is a contract, of sorts, a player signs announcing his intentions to play for that particular NAHL team and that NAHL team only. Once a player signs a tender with an NAHL team, his playing rights belong to that team within the NAHL and he may not be recruited by any other NAHL team. Each team is granted ten (10) tenders, which includes one tender exclusively used on players from the NA3HL - plus or minus any trades - which became active on Nov. 1. Tendered players are not eligible for the 2021 NAHL Draft.