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Meet the Vernon Vipers: JoJo Tanaka-Campbell


JoJo Tanaka- Campbell is one of the key returnees on the Vipers roster this year. The 19-year-old forward is a veteran this season as Vernon has a young team with many new players. Tanaka-Campbell has had quite the journey from high school hockey to now playing in his final year of junior with the Vipers. In the first of a series of player profiles, meet JoJo Tanaka-Campbell.

High school hockey

Tanaka-Campbell played bantam hockey for Shawnigan Lake School in the Canadian Sports School Hockey League in 2015-16. He finished third in team scoring with five goals and 14 assists for 19 points in 18 games. He also played four games for the Shawnigan Lake School Varsity team in the CSSHL U17 and had seven points.

The following season, Tanaka-Campbell made the jump to Shawnigan Lake School’s U18 team. He had a good season, playing 29 games, and putting up 31 points. In 2017-18, he led the team in scoring with 50 points in 34 games. He added another four points in the playoffs.

In the 2018-19 season, Tanaka-Campbell broke out, once again leading the team in scoring and landing in the top 10 in scoring in the CSSHL. He had 70 points in 36 games.

While playing on the Shawnigan Lake U18 team, Tanaka-Campbell was also an affiliate player with his hometown Cowichan Valley Capitals. The Mill Bay, BC product, played in 15 games for the Caps and had one point. He scored his first BCHL goal with the team during that 2018-19 season.

Commitment to the Vipers

Before the start of the 2019-20 season, the Vernon Vipers committed to Tanaka-Campbell and he got to play in his first full BCHL season. He was reunited with Shawnigan Lake teammate defenseman Keigo Hachisuka and had the opportunity to play with younger brother Seiya, who was an affiliate player for the Snakes. In his first full season, Tanaka-Campbell played in 52 games and had seven goals and 19 assists.

Heading into his second year with the Vipers, he has once again been reunited with a former Shawnigan Lake teammate in Griffan Barr. He is leading the team in scoring through the start of the extended preseason with four points in six games played. He scored the overtime winner versus Salmon Arm to give the Vipers their second win in the Okanagan Cup.

Academic achievement

Tanaka-Campbell is successful in the classroom as well. He won the Bill Brown Award for academic excellence on the Vipers and also was named Most Improved Player at the team’s year-end awards ceremony this past season.

The biggest honour Tanaka-Campbell won this year was the Academic Player of the Year for all of junior A hockey in Canada with a 94 percent grade point average in his senior year of high school.

Tanaka-Campbell caught the eyes of scouts from Yale University and is committed to play NCAA hockey for the Bulldogs in 2021-22. As well as playing Division 1 hockey, he will pursue an engineering degree. Also, playing at Yale will be a family affair as Tanaka-Campbell’s brother Seiya is also committed to play at the school in 2022-23.