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BETWEEN THE LINES | HIGH SCHOOLS

May 31, 1997

No laughing matter: Not even the smiling face painted on a leg could help Sandra Durazo after Kennedy High lost to El Camino Real, 2-1, in the City Section 4-A championship softball game Tuesday at UCLA.

Durazo, a senior right-hander who finished with a 21-5 record and 306 strikeouts in 187 2/3 innings, lost to El Camino Real in the title game for the second straight year.

Before the game Tuesday, Durazo had had a happy face painted above her right knee and, below that, the number of strikeouts she wanted to register.

"It keeps me going, keeps me focused," Durazo said of the season-long ritual.

"If things aren't going well and I get down on myself, I can just look down and see the [smiling] face and my goal. It's just a way to stay positive."

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