April 06, 2009|By From Sun staff and news services

Report: A-Rod might return this month


His recovery from hip surgery going well, Alex Rodriguez could return to the New York Yankees by the end of the month. Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long told the New York Post that the third baseman has begun to hit and "feels 70 percent." Rodriguez was expected to miss six to nine weeks after the hip surgery March 9, with the slugger returning by the middle of May.

Rays-Rockies trade: : Tampa Bay traded pitcher Jason Hammel to Colorado for minor league pitcher Aneury Rodriguez, meaning Jeff Niemann becomes the Rays' fifth starter.

6 scorers lift Caps to 2nd place in East


Tomas Fleischmann had his first multipoint game in nearly two months, and the host Washington Capitals got goals from six players to move into sole possession of second place in the Eastern Conference with a 6-4 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers (34-39-6). Fleischmann opened the scoring with an unassisted goal in the first period and assisted on Alexander Semin's tally during the Capitals' three-goal barrage in the third. Keith Aucoin, Michael Nylander, Eric Fehr and Brooks Laich also scored for the Capitals (48-23-8), who lead the New Jersey Devils (49-26-4) by two points in the battle for the East's No. 2 seed.

Red Wings 3, Wild 2: : Host Detroit (50-19-9) beat Minnesota (37-33-9) to break a three-game losing streak and become just the third team in HHL history to win 50 games in four straight seasons. The Boston Bruins did it from 1971-74 and the Montreal Canadiens from 1976-79.

Cavs turn it around at home, rout Spurs


LeBron James scored 38 points, Mo Williams and Delonte West added 22 apiece and the Cleveland Cavaliers avoided their first three-game losing streak with a 101-81 victory over the visiting San Antonio Spurs. Embarrassed in a 29-point loss in Orlando, a defeat that came one day after a loss at lowly Washington, Cleveland (62-15) improved to 37-1 at home. Tony Parker scored 24 for San Antonio (49-27) but got no help from Manu Ginobili (four points) or Tim Duncan (six points).

Nuggets 110, Timberwolves 87: : Carmelo Anthony (Towson Catholic) scored 23 and visiting Denver (52-26) easily beat Minnesota (22-55) for its seventh straight victory. The Nuggets extended their lead to two games over San Antonio for the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference.

Mavericks 140, Suns 116: : Jason Kidd had 19 points and a season-high 20 assists - all in just three quarters - to virtually assure host Dallas (46-31) of grabbing no worse than the final playoff spot in the West. Dallas owns a four-game lead over Phoenix (42-35) with five games left. Kidd's 14th assist gave him 10,142 for his career, passing Magic Johnson for No. 3 on the NBA's list.

More results: : Will Bynum scored a franchise-record 26 points in the fourth quarter as the host Pistons (37-40) beat the Bobcats, 104-97, to move three games ahead of Charlotte (34-43) for the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with five games left. Bynum finished with career-high 32 points. ... Yao Ming had 21 points and 12 rebounds to lead the host Rockets (49-28) to a 102-88 win over the Trail Blazers (48-28), who still gained their first playoff berth since 2003 when Phoenix lost. ... Ronnie Brewer scored 23 and the visiting Jazz (47-30) built a 30-point lead en route to completing a season sweep of the Hornets (47-29) with a 108-94 victory. ... Wilson Chandler scored 17 and the visiting Knicks (30-47) beat Toronto, 112-103, to eliminate the Raptors (30-46) from the playoffs. ... Vince Carter scored 15 and the host Nets (32-45) kept their playoff hopes alive by handing the 76ers (40-36) their worst loss of the season, 96-67. ... Danny Granger scored 24 and the visiting Pacers (33-44) stayed alive for a playoff spot with a 117-99 win over the Thunder (21-55). ... Kelenna Azubuike had 30 points and a career-high 15 rebounds, and the visiting Warriors (28-49) hung on to beat the Kings (16-60), 105-100. ... Lamar Odom and Kobe Bryant each scored 18 as the host Lakers (61-16) defeated the Clippers (18-59), 88-85.

Off the court: : Lakers coach Phil Jackson said that there's an "outside chance" center Andrew Bynum could return to the team's lineup this week. Bynum has been out since tearing a right knee ligament Jan. 31.

UM women improve to 13-0 in lacrosse

et cetera

Karri Ellen Johnson scored six goals and the No. 2 Maryland women's lacrosse team edged host and No. 14 Ohio State, 17-16, at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The Buckeyes (9-3) scored three unanswered goals to start the game before the Terps (13-0) answered with three of their own. Maryland broke a 9-9 halftime tie with a 3-0 run, then held off Ohio State. ... Sarah Geary made a season-high 19 saves as visiting Old Dominion beat Towson, 10-7. Jacie Kendall and Katie Cloud each scored twice for the Tigers (6-5, 0-2 Colonial Athletic Association). The Monarchs (7-3, 1-1) used a 4-0 run to take a 6-4 lead at the half.

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