Independence breeds success for Albert Gallatin

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Thursday, August 26, 2021 | 6:01 AM


It had been 35 years since the Albert Gallatin football team enjoyed a winning season when school district officials made the decision to leave the WPIAL in football only.

The idea was to breathe new life into a program that was not even competing.

In 2018, the Colonials finished 0-10 and were outscored 479-46, an average score of 48-4 with most of the games ending with a running clock.

The move has paid off for the Fayette County school as the Colonials have earned their independence against teams from the City League and West Virginia.

“It’s been huge for us,” coach Drew Dindl said. “The players are developing confidence and our mentality entering each game is very positive. We are expecting to win now.”

A year after finishing 5-3, AG followed up with a 5-1 record in a crazy 2020 season.

“What a wild year it was dealing with covid,” Dindl said. “Week to week was always an adventure and you never knew if you were going to play or not. Three out of the six teams we played weren’t even on our original schedule. The players handled all the craziness very well.”

One of the things that Dindl is excited about as the season grows closer is his senior class.

“They have a lot of great leadership and playing experience,” he said.

However, there are some concerns, especially with depth and the Colonials’ defensive backfield.

“Covid has put a little dent in our numbers, which has hurt our depth,” Dindl said. “The secondary has lost three out of four starters.”

Albert Gallatin does have nine starters back on offense and six on defense, including, according to Dindl, the team’s leading passer, rusher, leader in total yards and scoring, top lineman and leader on defense.

Leading the way for the Colonials is senior quarterback Tristan Robinson, senior running back Shawn Loring, senior athlete Bruno Fabrycki, senior linebacker Caleb Matzus-Chapman and senior lineman Nicco Mickens.

Playing an independent schedule, there are no conference, district or state championships to strive for at Albert Gallatin. There’s just, as Dindl concluded, the simple mindset of trying to get better as the season goes on while fighting for a victory on a Friday night.

“Continue to compete, win games, and build the program,” he said.

Albert Gallatin

Coach: Drew Dindl

2020 record: 5-1

All-time record: 224-352-12

SCHEDULE

Date, opponent, Time

8.27 at Yough, 7

9.10 Northern Garrett (Md.), 7

9.17 Uniontown, 7

9.24 Allegany (Md.), 7

10.1 at Southern Garrett (Md.), 7

10.8 University (W.Va.), 7

10.15 Weir (W.Va.), 7

10.22 at Charleroi, 7

10.29 Spring Mills (W.Va.), 7

STATISTICAL LEADERS

Passing: Tristan Robinson

9-22, 148 yards, 3 TDs

Rushing: Shawn Loring

603 yards, 6 TDs

Receiving: Bruno Fabrycki

4-80 yards, 1 TD

FAST FACTS

• Drew Dindl begins his fourth season as head coach at Albert Gallatin.

• This marks the third season Albert Gallatin is playing an independent schedule after leaving the WPIAL in football only after the 2018 campaign.

• The last winning season for the Colonials in the WPIAL was 1983. Playing an independent schedule in 2019 and 2020, Albert Gallatin is a combined 10-4.

• This is the 61st season of Albert Gallatin football, which merged from German and Fairchance-Georges high schools to form first Tri-Valley HS in 1987, then Albert Gallatin HS in 1994.

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