A Tall, Athletic, Expert Ahead

Niko Tournas
2024 UNH Commit

“Tournas scored among the finest targets we noticed all week on a snipe prime nook from the slot which was not solely completely positioned and had an explosive launch however he learn the goalie and noticed that was the one spot he may have put it. An intriguing prospect together with his dimension, his athleticism, his skating skill and uncooked instruments” Impartial Zone, July, 2022

Niko Tournas

Ahead, 6’2″, 185 lbs. Shoots Proper
Hometown: Redding, Connecticut
DOB: February 17, 2006 16 years, 7 months
Impartial Zone Ranking: 3.75 out of 5 Stars
Present Crew: New Jersey Rockets 16U AAA (THF 16U)
Dedicated to UNH in September, 2022 at Age 16 years, 7 months.

2022 Spotlight Reel


I had a chance to interview Niko Tournas, by way of electronic mail, about his hockey profession and dedication to UNH:

Mike Lowry: Congratulations in your dedication to play for the College of New Hampshire. How did you first change into enthusiastic about UNH? What are the primary causes you selected to decide to UNH?

Niko Tournas: I at all times have been a Hockey East Fan and at all times wished to play in that league. I grew to become enthusiastic about UNH after I obtained to fulfill the teaching workers and see the campus. Liked every thing about it and the Teaching Employees simply made the entire thing really feel proper.

I selected UNH as a result of I beloved the campus however extra importantly Coach Mike, Coach Jeff and Coach Glenn made me really feel welcome and I imagine they’ll assist me take my hockey to the subsequent degree.

Mike Lowry: What different school packages did you think about through the recruiting course of? Which faculties did you go to and which of them made a proposal to you?

Niko Tournas: Sure, I thought of different faculties in Hockey East and sure there have been faculties speaking about provides however Coach Mike and the UNH workers simply made me really feel welcome. Generally it’s important to go together with your intestine and my intestine informed me UNH is my college. I need to be a Wildcat and I wished to be part of a real hockey college. I do know they love their hockey at UNH and I hope so as to add to that pleasure.

Lowry: Have you ever and the UNH coaches agreed on a goal date so that you can enroll as a freshman at UNH and be a part of the crew?

Tournas: My objective is to play Juniors within the USHL my Senior Yr in highschool and see how issues go from there. I used to be drafted by the Omaha Lancers and I’m working onerous to hopefully play for Coach Wilkie and the Lancers subsequent 12 months.

Lowry: At this stage in your improvement, what are the primary strengths of your recreation? What areas are you making an attempt to enhance?

Tournas: I’ve at all times been generally known as a objective scorer. I really like scoring and I’m at all times engaged on inventive methods to beat a goalie and put the puck within the web.

I’m at all times making an attempt to enhance each facet of my recreation. I imagine the off ice piece is simply as essential because the on ice piece. I’m working onerous off ice to get stronger and quicker. Hitting the gymnasium has change into my most important focus now and my new obsession.

Lowry: Final 12 months, as a sophomore at your hometown highschool – Joel Barlow HS, Redding, Connecticut – you performed for Joel Barlow/Weston/Abbott, a co-op of three excessive faculties in Connecticut’s Division III South-West Convention (SWC). You scored 59 targets, 15 assists in 21 video games, lead the crew to the SWC Championship, and earned D-III SWC Participant of the Yr. Would you describe what it meant to realize these accomplishments in your hometown?

Tournas: I used to be very excited to have the ability to play for my native highschool and take them to their first ever SWC Convention Championship. I had an amazing coach and would love a shout out to Coach Mike Mallozzi who made that 12 months much more pleasant. I loved each second taking part in and had an amazing bunch of teammates that made hockey enjoyable.

Lowry: This season, you are taking part in for the New Jersey Rockets 16U AAA crew primarily based in Bridgewater, NJ. What went into your choice to make this transfer? You have already scored 10 targets, 7 assists in 8 video games. Do you’re feeling the extent of competitors is difficult sufficient?

Tournas: Taking part in for the NJ Rockets is by far the very best hockey choice I’ve made up to now. I used to be on the lookout for a crew that will compete for a Nationwide Championship and a Coach that may take them there.

The competitors is prime notch and taking part in for Coach Noel Rubin has elevated my recreation and is making me the hockey participant I need to change into. He holds me accountable and makes me work tougher then I’ve ever labored. I do know that Coach Rubin will get me prepared for subsequent 12 months and taking part in within the USHL. I’m surrounded by very proficient gamers and a Coach that is aware of what to do with them. I stay up for my journey with this crew and my teammates.

Lowry: There are a variety of indicators you might be one of many prime US forwards born in 2006. You participated within the 2021 USA Hockey Choose 15 Participant Growth Camp and the 2022 Choose 16 Camp. You had been invited to compete for a roster place on the 2022 US Nationwide Crew Growth Program’s analysis camp. Additionally, the Impartial Zone scouting service ranked you the thirty ninth ahead on their listing of prime 300 gamers born in 2006. How do you assume your expertise evaluate with the opposite prime US forwards in your delivery 12 months?

Tournas: I imagine I can compete with anybody. I work onerous on a regular basis. I shoot pucks on a regular basis. I do know what I must do to be among the finest and I attempt to dwell my life to perform my targets. I do know if I take the day without work or every week off somebody out there’s working onerous so I select to maintain working each day until I get to the end line. .

Lowry: Final Could, the Omaha Lancers chosen you within the eighth Spherical (113th General) of the 2022 USHL Part I (Futures) Draft. You participated of their coaching camp this summer season. Do you anticipate taking part in for Omaha this season or subsequent?

Tournas: I might be taking part in for the NJ Rockets and Coach Noel Rubin this 12 months. I hope to be taking part in for the Omaha Lancers and Coach Wilkie subsequent season.

Lowry: When do you propose to graduate from highschool? What are your tutorial strengths and pursuits? Have you considered what you may main in whenever you enroll at UNH?

Tournas: I might be graduating in 2024. My strengths are Math and English. I might be majoring in Finance at UNH.

Impartial Zone Scouting Report

Nationwide Crew Growth Program Analysis Camp, March, 2022

“Tournas was a bit below the radar final 12 months heading into Nationwide Growth Camp in Buffalo over the summer season however his 4 targets in 4 video games and dimension and ability mixture caught our consideration. This season he performed Connecticut Excessive College hockey so this was fairly a bounce in competitors for Tournas however to his credit score he rose to the problem.”

“He’s 6’1” and 181lbs, he has an extended and fluid stride, handles the puck nicely on the frenzy and may lower inside on defenders. He confirmed poise with the puck and a slick toe drag and pull earlier than he shoots to alter the angle and he can do it at pace. He scored a pleasant objective with a slight pull and launch that snuck in 5-hole towards U17’s and scored once more on a line rush on a deke and shoot play at pace. He can catch passes on each his forehand and backhand and settle wobbling pucks displaying his puck contact. Tournas remains to be a bit inexperienced having not performed a lot excessive degree competitors hockey however he has all of the uncooked instruments you need in a tall, athletic, expert ahead with excessive potential.”

Youth & Excessive College Hockey Statistics

Participant Season Crew League GP Targets Asst Pts PIM
Niko Tournas (F) 2022-23 New Jersey Rockets 16U AAA THF 16U 8 10 7 17 2
Crew Columbia USA Choose 16 5 1 2 3 0
2021-22 Joel Barlow Weston Abbott Excessive USHS-CT 21 59 15 74
Yale Jr. Bulldogs 15U BEAST 15U
Crew Navy USA Choose 15 4 4 0 4 2
2020-21 CT Jr. Whalers 14U AAA AYHL 14U 7 12 4 16 6
2019-20 CT Jr. Whalers 13U AAA AYHL 13U 25 26 23 49 20