skip navigation

Unfinished Business

12/27/2022, 11:15am CST
By Bryan Zollman

Cretin-Derham Hall's Jake Fisher looks to lead the Raiders back to state

Jake Fisher is one of the top players in the state and will look to lead Cretin-Derham Hall to another section title. Fisher led the Upper Midwest High School Elite League in scoring this fall and is committed to Northern Michigan. PHOTO SUBMITTED


 The Upper Midwest Elite League is a chance for players to showcase their abilities against the other top high school-aged players in the state. 

Once against that competition, it becomes harder to score or rack up assists.

But not for Cretin-Derham Hall’s Jake Fisher. 

Fisher led the Elite League with 54 points. A year removed from being a key cog in the Raiders run to No. 1 in the Class AA for a good part of last season, he has shown no signs of slowing down, and hopes, despite losing 14 seniors (including older brother and Star Tribune Metro Player of the Year, Drew), the Raiders can once again rise to the top of Section 3AA and get back to the X come March. 

“Losing 14 seniors is tough, but the group of returners is very talented,” said the senior Northern Michigan commit. “We will have some guys who lack varsity experience, but we are definitely a group capable of winning another section title, and making a deep state tournament run.” 

That was the plan last season, but it was short-circuited in the state quarterfinals when they ran into Alex Bump and the Prior Lake Lakers. Bump scored five goals en route to a 6-0 thwarting of the deeper Raiders. They followed with a loss in the consolation and experienced the unlikely “two-and-barbeque” nobody was expecting. 

“Obviously last year state did not go our way,” he said. “We wish there was a different outcome, but given what had happened we really are using it as fuel for this year. Everyone wants to go to the state tournament. Last year’s performance gives us a chip on our shoulder.” 

The team will rely heavily on Fisher, who has been thrust into a leadership role. He is off to a great start with 13 goals and 25 points in the team's first 12 games.

Like his older brother, his hockey playing days started young, and a long way from his current home in Woodbury. He began skating when he was two and the family moved to Toronto when he was six. His father, Tony, a former professional baseball player, had moved the family to Toronto for his job at Target. 

“After we moved to Toronto is when I really fell in love with the game,” he said. “Growing up in that area really drove my passion for the game and helped make me the player I am today.” 

In Canada Jake played for the Oakville Rangers and won the Ontario Provincial Championship. Upon returning back to Minnesota, Jake played for Woodbury where they won a Peewee AA state title. 

Because they were so close in age, they played together for many years, and always pushed each other. 

“My relationship with my brother is unlike many other brother relationships given that we are really close and have played hockey together all our years growing up,” he said. “It’s really pushed us to be better hockey players.” 

They maintained a healthy competitive relationship, so when one of them succeeded, the other was motivated to improve. They skated together as linemates for three years, culminating last year in a season where they combined for 51 goals and 61 assists in 29 games. 

Drew is currently playing for the NAHL’s Wisconsin Windigo. Jake played three games for the Fargo Force in the USHL this fall and will likely play another year of juniors before heading to Northern Michigan. 

Jake Fisher is quick and agile, and has the ability to make plays at high speed. He also has a lethal shot, a skill honed from years of firing pucks in the family garage. He has drawn the attention of NHL scouts who have been at many of Cretin’s games so far this season. 

“Shooting and stickhandling in my garage has really boosted my game,” he said. “The weight room has also played a key role in my development. Consistently working and getting stronger has really helped me to be the skater I am today.” 

At 6’2” and 190 pounds, Fisher has a rare combination of skill, speed and playmaking skills. 

But he knows there is lots of room for improvement. 

“I want to continue using my big frame as an advantage,” he said. “I also want to make sure I am adding value defensively and away from the puck.” 

He brings those skills to the ice one more season wearing a Raiders jersey with a memory that is not too distant. A memory he wants to experience again. 

“Punching that ticket to state is something I will never forget,” he said. “There was no better feeling than making the Cretin-Derham Hall community proud.” 

Can they get through their section again? If they do, Fisher will be leading the way. 

So far they are off to a great start with a 8-4 record.

They also recently lost teammate Cormick Scanlan, who passed away Christmas Day after suffering form several strokes. Now the Raiders have even more reason to take care of business. Not just for themselves, but for their cherished teammate.

“We wish there was a different outcome (at state last year), but given what had happened we really are using it as fuel for this year,” he said. “Everyone wants to go to the state tournament. Last year’s performance gives us a chip on our shoulder.”

  • All that matters

  • 04/19/2018, 11:00am CDT , By Bryan Zollman, Let's Play Hockey
  • The tragedy that struck the Humboldt Broncos provides everyone with a valuable lesson in perspective
  • Read More

Tag(s): State Of Hockey