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Northwestern tops Maryland in Lacrosse Final Four

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Northwestern tops Maryland in Lacrosse Final Four

STONY BROOK, N.Y. (AP) -- Taylor Thornton scored twice, including the game-winning goal with 16:19 remaining and second-seeded Northwestern advanced to another women's lacrosse national championship game with a 9-7 victory over No. 3 Maryland on Friday night.

Shannon Smith took just one shot on goal, but collected four assists in the victory. She set up goals by Alex Frank, Jessica Russo, Kara Mupo and Lacey Vigmostad.

Erin Fitzgerald and Amanda Macaluso also scored for Northwestern (20-2), which will face fourth-seeded Syracuse on Sunday for its seventh title in eight years. The Orange advanced with a 14-13, double-overtime victory over top-seeded Florida in the first semifinal.

Katie Schwarzmann scored three goals for Maryland (19-4), which lost to the Wildcats in last season's championship game. Last year, the Terrapins opened a three-goal lead on the Wildcats, and they even held a two-goal margin early in the second half before folding.

Kristy Black, Karri Ellen Johnson, Kelly McPartland and Brooke Griffin also scored for Maryland, which had won eight straight games by scoring at least 12 goals.

Last year's game also was decided by virtually the same score, though this year, the winner came much sooner than with 4 minutes remaining. Thornton made it 8-6 by getting past a defender and going up the middle to beat Maryland goaltender Brittany Dipper for her 31st tally of the season.

The Terrapins overcame a one-goal deficit midway through the first half and took a 5-4 lead into halftime on Johnson's 54th goal of the season. Schwarzmann gave the Terrapins a two-goal lead less than three minutes into the second half, but Northwestern tied it on goals by Kara Mupo and Amanda Macaluso 49 seconds apart.

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2018 MLB Power Rankings: All-Star update

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2018 MLB Power Rankings: All-Star update

The All-Star break is a perfect opportunity to sit down and re-evaluate the landscape of Major League Baseball. As it turns out, however, there aren't as many meaningful moves as one might expect.

The unrivaled dominance of the Astros, Red Sox, and Yankees sets us up for a wildly entertaining October, and the uber-talented rosters of the Indians, Cubs and Dodgers will make noise as well. Still, it means the top three (and, moving down, the next three to four teams) in our power rankings haven't experienced much variance in 2018.

The gap between the haves and the have-nots has never been more pronounced than it is in this era, which means the bottom-four teams have stayed pretty steady since May. Yes, the Reds have made a nice jump since Jim Riggleman took over, and the Orioles are about 15 spots lower than we had them in March, but none of the major moves will have any real impact on who we expect to win the World Series this year.

That doesn't mean it's not worthwhile to see where each team stands, however, and these are certainly still subject to change. The Nationals, for example, have enough talent and starpower on the roster to jump into the top six or seven teams as a legitimate title contender at some point.  

The stars are out in D.C. this week, as baseball converges onto the nation's capital. Are the hometown team's stars enough to keep the roster in the conversation for the playoffs? 

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