State Softball: Starkenburg Mows Down Iowa City West
By Jeff Linder, Reporter
FORT DODGE — Shayla Starkenburg is the superstar. Kendyl Lindaman is the future.
And top-rated Ankeny was simply too much for Iowa City West.
Starkenburg improved to 30-0 with a two-hit gem, and Lindaman drove in all four runs as the Hawkettes subdued the ninth-ranked Women of Troy, 4-0, in a Class 5A semifinal at the state softball tournament Thursday night at the Rogers Sports Complex.
“(Starkenburg) is a very good pitcher, obviously,” said West’s Michaela Recker, who had one of West’s two hits. “She had a really good night, and they deserved to win.”
Ankeny (38-6) will play for the 5A championship at 7 p.m. Friday against No. 6 Des Moines East (33-5). It’s a rematch of last year’s 4A final, won by East.
For Starkenburg, who will pitch next year at the University of Iowa, it was a bit of revenge against several of the Women of Troy. West beat Ankeny in March for the state basketball title.
“That played a factor in my mindset because most of the West girls played,” she said. “We’re familiar with each other in big-time game situations.”
Starkenburg fanned 11 batters.
“She was lights-out,” said West coach Jeff Kelley. “We’re a pretty good hitting team, and we don’t strike out a lot. She threw really well.”
And Lindaman hit really well.
The eighth-grader drove in two runs with a single in the third-inning, then put the game to bed with a two-run home run in the seventh.
It was her third homer of the tournament, her 12th of the season.
Lindaman got her first opportunity because West pitcher Mackenzie Laux suffered through a rough stretch with her control. She walked three straight batters preceding Lindaman.
West (37-7) faces Pleasant Valley (33-7) in the third-place game at 5:30 p.m. Friday.
Recker had West’s first hit, in the fifth inning. Lauren Larson added a single in the seventh.
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