by Scott Kindberg
December 6, 1998
Fischer Earns Post-Journal ‘Three-Peat’
Curt Fischer has hit the trifecta.
Three years, three Post-Journal Coach of the Year awards.
What can he possibly do for an encore?
It’s been that kind of run for the Maple Grove football coach.
After two losses in the Class D Far West Regional in both 1996 and 1997, Fischer guided the Red Dragons to the long-coveted Class D state championship, a goal they had established almost immediately after the conclusion of last season.
With 13 wins this year, Fischer’s record since the start of ‘96 is 32-3 and 59-12 since 1992.
“At a D school level, you have to put people in positions and hope they work out,” he said. “And then you have to coach… It’s a nice challenge and we’re willing to take it on.”
Have they ever.
Fischer and his staff not only coached, but they guided coaxed, persuaded and drilled the Red Dragons into becoming the best team in school history.
For the Red Dragons, it was not only their first state football title, but it was also just the third among Chautauqua and Cattaraugus county schools. Only Jamestown, the Class A champion in 1994 and 1995, has accomplished such a feat among area schools.
Along the way, the Red Dragons were pushed to overtime in the Section 6 playoffs by both Randolph and Pine Valley, games which Fischer felt prepared his team for the challenges ahead.
“If they didn’t give us the kind of games they gave us, who knows?” Fischer said. “They were only a couple of points from being here themselves.”
Once freed of their rivals, the Red Dragons put their impressive offense on display for the whole state to see. Fischer, the engineer of the high-octane attack, watched his team average more than 30 points a game in their final three games, while shattering Section 6 and state records in the process.
While he pushed all the right offensive buttons – check the record books this year for proof of that – Fischer has also built the program into a family. “Eleven as one,” is a familiar refrain.
“I’m thankful for these kids,” Fischer said after the Red Dragons’ sate semifinal victory over Dolgeville. “As soon as you put their backs against the wall, they still keep coming up big. What a bunch of winners. They’re going to be winners all their lives. This is a big part of their livers. They’ll never forget it.”
Fischer won’t either.
Coaching is not just a job for him. Rather, it’s a passion. Yet, if it wasn’t apparent before, it’s clear that wins and state titles are only a part of Fischer’s game plan.
“When I came here, the two things I wanted to do,” he said, “were to create an alumni that would be really proud and get the community and school spirit rolling, and I think we’ve done that.”