The Indians under Bob Palko have been one of the best programs in the WPIAL as they have won seven WPIAL titles since 1997 and three of them have come since 2009.
But the Indians are moving up in class from 3-A to 5-A and that means they could find the road to be a little rockier as they are now in a conference with former 4-A powers Woodland Hills, Upper St. Clair and North Hills.
Of course, that might make things a little tougher for Palko’s crew but that doesn’t mean they still can’t rise to the top, especially since he has built them like a good old fashioned Western Pa football team.
Roughly translated that means the Indians are built on a strong running game, are tough and physical in the trenches and they play great defense and they can physically match up to anyone in the WPIAL.
That’s why it isn’t a surprise that the Indians best player is a lineman – Kieran Firment – who is dominant on both sides of the ball.
Firment is 6-foot-4, 280 pounds and has committed to Colorado State as an offensive guard, though he registered 68 tackles last year from his defensive end spot.
Senior Matt Holmes is another excellent defensive lineman for the Indians and the combination of him and Firment is a handful for any offensive line to deal with.
The Indians will also likely continue their tradition of using two quarterbacks – starter Nick Ross and junior wildcat quarterback Kenny White – and they will again run the ball early and often.
White is also a running back and receiver and starts at safety as well and Palko will again use him in multiple roles as he has always been good at getting his best players on the field as much as possible.