With Howard gone, sigh of relief for Wiz

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With Howard gone, sigh of relief for Wiz

All of a sudden the middle has opened up for the Wizards in the Southeast Division as Orlando shipped out all-star center Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers as part of a four-team trade. This is great news for the Wizards who always struggled defending the 7-foot Howard. Instead of facing Howard and Orlando four times a season, they only have to face him twice now that he's with a western conference team.

Howard has owned the Wizards. Last season, he went for 28 points and 20 rebounds in a Magic win over D.C. in January. Howard followed that up in February with 23 points and 18 rebounds in yet another win against the Wizards. In the 2010-11 season, Orlando never lost to Washington, with Howard leading the way averaging 27 points and 11 rebounds a game. In fact, the last time Orlando with Howard playing lost to the Wizards was in February of 2010 when Brendan Haywood started at center for Washington.

With Howard out of the picture the Magic have to figure out who is going to be the new man in the middle because right now they don't have a true center on the roster, only several power forwards like Justin Harper and Gustavo Ayon. Those are names that don't strike fear into anyone and the Wizards are just fine with that, as centers Nene and power forward Emeka Okafor should have their way with the Magic down in the interior.

The Lakers are once again an NBA title contender but at least the Wizards don't have to see Howard as much as they used to. Things are looking up in D.C.

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Orioles' seven-game losing streak ends Monday largely thanks to Dylan Bundy

Orioles' seven-game losing streak ends Monday largely thanks to Dylan Bundy

BALTIMORE (AP) -- Dylan Bundy allowed two runs over seven innings in another strong start at Camden Yards, and the Baltimore Orioles beat the New York Yankees 3-2 Monday to snap a seven-game losing streak.

Jonathan Schoop had two RBIs to help the Orioles end their longest skid since a nine-game drought in 2011. Baltimore took a 3-1 lead with two unearned runs in the third inning and held on to improve the AL's best home record to 16-7.

Aaron Judge hit his major league-leading 17th home run for the first-place Yankees in this AL East matchup.

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Bundy (6-3) gave up seven hits, struck out three and walked one. The right-hander is 4-1 with a 2.23 ERA in six home starts this season.

Darren O'Day worked a perfect eighth and Brad Brach got three straight outs for his 10th save in 13 tries.

Yankees rookie Jordan Montgomery (2-4) allowed three runs, one earned, in 4 1-3 innings.

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With two championships in two days, Maryland's lacrosse teams join unique club

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With two championships in two days, Maryland's lacrosse teams join unique club

Any NCAA Championship deserves an explosive celebration because of the guaranteed adversity faced and collective team effort to go all the way. The Maryland men's lacrosse team — in addition to its challenging 16-3 season — has been fighting four decades' worth of adversity on its way to its first title since the 1975 season.

But when the Terrapins took down Ohio State — which handed Maryland one of its losses in overtime this season — on Monday, 9-6, for the championship, they gave the school, the athletic department and its fan base an extra boost of Terps pride after the women's team claimed its third title in four seasons Sunday. It's also just the third time in NCAA lacrosse history — or since the women began playing in 1982 — a school's men's and women's teams returned to College Park as champions in the same season. 

Last season, both North Carolina teams won their respective championships, and before that, there was only Princeton in 1994. 

Topping Boston College on Sunday to cap a perfect, undefeated season, the women's program reaffirmed its power, earning its 13th championship — the most of any school and six more than second-place Northwestern — while the men opened what could be a new era of Terrapin dominance. 

It's a special lacrosse weekend for Maryland, and its fans should cherish the rarity of their men's and women's teams rising to the top of the NCAA. UConn's basketball teams have done it a couple times, and it happens in sports like swimming relatively often. But in lacrosse, both teams being the best in the nation is truly exceptional, and it deserves to be celebrated as much as the individual championships themselves.

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