Amy Farmer-Shannon's Ankeny story is now complete.
Farmer-Shannon's final chapter as the Hawkette coach mirrored the conclusion to her career as a player, as Ankeny captured the first-ever Class 5A state championship with a 2-0 victory over Des Moines East on Diamond 1 at Rogers Park on Friday night.
Nearly 16 years ago to the day, Farmer-Shannon was named captain of the all-tournament team on the Hawkettes' last state softball championship squad. A little over a decade later, she became the leader of a program that was going through an unusually-long qualifying drought.
Within five seasons, Farmer-Shannon helped deliver back-to-back appearances in the state finals. And last night, her squad brought the title back to Ankeny in the finale of Farmer-Shannon's tenure.
''I'm a little overwhelmed. This is a very emotional moment,'' said Farmer-Shannon, who is leaving AHS to take an administrative position with the Burlington school district this fall. ''I'm trying my best to not think about this being the last time I'll be with these players.
''They are the ones who deserve the credit for this. They've earned it. I will miss each and every one of them and I thank them for making my experience here a memorable one.''
Ankeny 2, Des Moines East 0
Ankeny 001 001 0 - 2 4 1
DM East 000 000 0 - 0 3 0
Shayla Starkenburg (W, 31-0; 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K) and Chloe Stinman; Riley Fisher (L, 15-3; 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 7 BB, 5 K) and Meredith Henriksen.
In a rematch of the 2011 large-class title contest, the top-ranked Hawkettes (39-6) exacted revenge on the No. 6 Scarlets (33-6) with single runs in the third and sixth innings. That was more than enough for ace hurler Shayla Starkenburg (31-0), who completed an undefeated senior campaign with her third shutout in as many games at state.
The University of Iowa recruit fired a three-hitter against East, which briefly threatened in the seventh before Janie Smith lined into a double play that cleared the Hawkettes' path once and for all.
Starkenburg gave up six runs and nine hits to the Scarlets a year ago in the championship round.
Starkenburg and Iowa State Cyclone recruit Aly Cappaert joined fellow teammate Ashlie Chambers on the 5A all-tournament team. The captain was Hawkette eighth-grader Kendyl Lindaman, who hit three combined home runs in Ankeny's earlier wins over Marshalltown and Iowa City West.
Future Iowa State Cyclone Riley Fisher (15-3) took the loss for East. Fisher, who was in the circle for the Scarlets' title run last summer, again struggled with her control, walking seven last night to give her 18 free passes for the tournament.
''You don't get too many second chances in life like this,'' Farmer-Shannon said. ''Last year after playing (the Scarlets), we were crying tears of sadness. Now it's tears of joy. We are very fortunate to be in this position again, and we wanted to make the most of it.''
Ankeny outscored its three state tourney opponents by a combined score of 19-0. The Hawkettes' closest postseason game wound up being their 1-0 regional final win over Fort Dodge.