Preseason Team Countdown: No. 55 Plainfield East



By Sean Duncan
Executive Director

Leading up to the start of the high school season, we will count down the top 75 preseason teams every day as part of our comprehensive season coverage:

Team: Plainfield East
Preseason Rank:
55
2013 Record:
14-18
Conference:
Southwest Prairie
IHSA Class:  
4A
Head Coach:
Adam O’Reel
Playoff Run: Lost in First Round

2013 Final Rank:  Not Ranked

Returning Starters: 7
Returning Pitchers:
5

TOP PLAYERS
Jovany Urbieta, 3B, 2014 (Lake Land JC)
Drew DeMumbrum, LHP/OF, 2016
Cole Kotopka, RHP, 2015
Michael McGee, C/UTIL, 2015
Jeremy Dutton, C/OF, 2014
Steve Dunlap, SS, 2014
Ryan Roberts, RHP, 2015
Anthony Bryan, INF, 2015

X-FACTOR
Cole Kotopka
. Coach Adam O’Reel says the 6-foot-5 junior right-hander is one of the best-kept secrets in the state. O’Reel says Kotopka has been up to 86 mph without focusing much on baseball, as he is the school’s starting quarterback. If the Bengals are going to compete in the Southwest Prairie, Kotopka will need to step up as a reliable frontline pitcher.


OUTLOOK
Plainfield East is a newer school, and it has typically resided in the Southwest Prairie cellar since its inception. The Bengals outlook changed dramatically when they advanced to the Elite Eight of the IHSBCA summer state tournament last July. O’Reel welcomes back seven starters and five pitchers from last year’s team that finished 14-18. The team’s experience and success in the summer is why the Bengals are making their first-ever appearance in the state rankings. Sophomore LHP/OF Drew DeMumbrum, who’s a highly ranked 2016 prospect in Illinois, served as the team’s No. 1 as a freshman last year. He also has the ability to be a standout offensive player. Senior 3B Jovany Urbieta headlines the offense, while SS Steve Dunlap anchors the infield defense.

BOTTOM LINE
If the summer is any indication, then the Plainfield East program has turned the corner. It won’t be easy to sustain its success, however, as the Southwest Prairie Conference is stronger than ever this season, with the likes of Minooka, Plainfield North and Plainfield South in the mix.

 

Season Countdown

+ Preseason Team Rankings

+ Updated Illinois 2014 Player Rankings

+ June Event Schedule

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