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It's nine straight for Minnesota men

Minnesota rips Penn State in Big Ten opener

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- One game into the Big Ten season, the Minnesota Gophers already have surpassed most people's expectations.

"Two months ago, people said we wouldn't win a game, let alone a Big Ten game," Gophers coach Dan Monson said.

How about nine in row?

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Aaron Robinson hit six, three-pointers to finish with 19 points, Jeff Hagen added 18 and Minnesota opened conference play with its ninth straight victory, beating Penn State 83-62 on Saturday night.

The Gophers' winning streak is the longest under Monson, whose team hasn't lost since falling 70-69 to Florida State on Nov. 30. Minnesota last won nine in a row in 1997, when the Gophers had 12 straight victories. That season was wiped from the record books, though, after the Clem Haskins academic fraud scandal.

This year's team probably would prefer to delete last season, also. A year ago, Minnesota lost its Big Ten opener to the Nittany Lions, the first of nine straight conference losses. Hagen said the team had high expectations last year.

"This year it's nice to be able to back it up," he said with a grin. "We're actually going to do well this year."

Minnesota (11-3, 1-0 Big Ten) entered this season with extremely low expectations since only five lettermen are back from last year's team.

Robinson's six 3s tied a career high.

Game summary, Page 2D.

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