Go ahead and call it a dynasty.
The Shawnee Heights softball program has been the dominant force in Class 5A as the 2010s wind to a close, and capped off another remarkable season with their third consecutive state championship with a 12-1 six-inning victory over Bishop Carroll in Maize on Saturday.
Though the T-Birds saw their 66-game winning streak snapped by that same Golden Eagle squad late in the regular season, they bounced back with a vengeance, outscoring their opposition 30-4 on their path through the state tournament bracket.
Jaycee Ginter hurled shut-out ball and Abi Schulte homered in the opener as Shawnee Heights opened tourney play with a six-inning 10-0 victory over Lansing. They followed that up with an 8-3 win over Maize South, in which Sydney Wellshear, Kam Wells, and Abbey Fischer all went yard in a four-run sixth inning that broke the game open.
That set up a rubber match with Carroll, against whom the Thunderbirds had split a pair of games in the regular season. The game was scoreless through two innings, but in the third, Aniya Holt’s three-run bomb put Shawnee Heights in front to stay. Ginter threw a three-hitter, Wellshear added another homer, and Shy Tyler hit a three-run dinger that ended up being a walk-off shot as the T-Birds mercy-ruled the Golden Eagles to take the title.
WIBW’s Dan Lucero spoke with Shawnee Heights head softball coach Tara Griffith about her team’s three-peat. Click below to hear the interview.