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In father's shadow, Francona made her own name at North Carolina

Updated: February 28, 2009, 12:42 PM ET
By Graham Hays | ESPN.com

CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. -- Crouched at the hot corner, glove ready, Alyssa Francona waits for the pitch. The Green Monster is behind her, and a Jimmy Fund billboard is perched just beyond her peripheral vision above the right-field stands.

Sometimes life has a strange sense of humor.

As a third baseman for the University of North Carolina, Francona has made a name for herself in college softball. At some point in the next week or two, she'll start her 100th career game at third ...

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