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MINNESOTA SPORTS ROUND-UP: T-Wolves rally comes up short, lose first game

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CLEVELAND, Ohio  --  Minnesota forward Kevin Love missed a three-pointer in the closing seconds as the Timberwolves' late rally came up short in a 93-92 loss to the Cavaliers in Cleveland last night. 

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Minnesota finished the game on a 17-to-2 run, but needed two more to avoid taking its first loss of the season.  C.J. Miles paced Cleveland with 19 points off the bench, while Kyrie Irving chipped in 15 points, eight rebounds and six assists.  The Cavs evened up their record at 2-2.  Kevin Martin continued his hot shooting from behind the arc, knocking down five three's on his way to 23 points.  Minnesota is 3-1.  The Wolves host Golden State tomorrow night in Minneapolis.

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The NBA is honoring Timberwolves forward Kevin Love as its Western Conference Player of the Week.  Love leads the league in scoring with 29-point-seven points per game as Minnesota opened the season with three straight wins before last night's loss in Ohio to the Cavaliers, 93-92.

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University of Minnesota junior center Maurice Walker of Scarborough, Ontario posted a double-double as Minnesota beat Concordia-St. Paul 101-67 in an exhibition game at Williams Arena last night.  Walker scored 17 points and grabbed 13 rebounds off the bench.  He played 24 minutes and says losing weight in the offseason has been a key to him being able to play more minutes.  Junior guard Andre Hollins of Memphis added 16 points.  Cole Olstad and Terez VanPelt scored 16 each for the Golden Bears.  Minnesota opens the regular season on Friday night against Lehigh at 7 p.m. at the Barn.

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The University of Minnesota football team is red hot and people are taking notice.  Golden Gopher sophomore quarterback Phillip Nelson of Mankato has named the Big Ten Conference Offensive Player of the Week.  Nelson led Minnesota to a 42-39 win at Indiana, throwing for 298-yards and four touchdowns.  This is Nelson's first career Offensive Player of the Week honor to go along with a Freshman of the Week honor he won last season.  Gopher sophomore punter Peter Mortell of Green Bay is the Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week after averaging 43-yards per punt in the win, including two he placed inside of the 20-yard-line.  This is the first career weekly honor for Mortell. The Golden Gophers have won three Big Ten games in a row for the first time since 2008 after Saturday's win at Indiana.  Minnesota has not won four straight conference games since 1973.  The Gophers will get their chance this Saturday when Penn State visits TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis for an 11 a.m. contest.  Minnesota is 7-2 overall and 3-2 in the Big Ten.  The Nittany Lions are 5-3 overall and  2-2 in the Big Ten. Saturday's game kick's off at 11 a.m. and will be brodacast on ESPN2. The winner will receive the Governors' Victory Bell Trophy.

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The Minnesota Vikings will be without standout tight end Kyle Rudolph for about one month, according to head coach Leslie Frazier.  The MVP of last year's NFL Pro Bowl suffered a broken left foot while scoring a touchdown in Sunday's 27-23 loss at Dallas.  Rudolph has 30 catches for 313 yards and three touchdowns in eight games for the Vikes this season.  Litchfield native John Carlson will now be asked to carry more of the load at tight end.  In addition, Frazier says quarterback Christian Ponder will remain the starting quarterback for Thursday's game against Washington at the Metrodome.  The Vikings also signed defensive end Justin Trattou to the practice squad yesterday.  Trattou is a third-year player out of the University of Florida.  He has spent previous time on the roster of the New York Giants.  The Vikings are 1-7 on the season.

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Players from the NSIC and the MIAC have received weekly awards for their work on the football field.  Augsburg sophomore receiver Joey Sonnenfeld of Maple Grove is the MIAC Offensive Player of the Week, after scoring both Auggie touchdowns in a narrow 17-14 defeat to No. 21 St. Thomas.  His junior teammate Michael Juberian of Richfield is the league's Defensive Player of the Week.  And, Gustavus Adolphus junior kicker Thomas Schleusener of Rapid City, South Dakota is the conference's Special Teams Player of the Week after helping the Gusties upset No. 18 St. Thomas in double overtime, 23-20, on Saturday.  Southwest Minnesota State sophomore safety Jared Twedt of Hudson, South Dakota is the NSIC Defensive Player of the Week.  Upper Iowa running back Chris Smith of Brown Deer, Wisconsin is the league's Offensive Player of the Week.  And, Augustana senior Grant Gebhardt of Burwell, Nebraska is the NSIC Special Teams Player of the Week.

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Minnesota Wild head coach Mike Yeo canceled yesterday's scheduled practice and will have his team workout this morning leading into tonight's game against Calgary.  Yeo rewarded the team with the day off after it knocked off New Jersey 4-0 on Sunday night in St. Paul.  Josh Harding registered the shutout victory in net.  Today's practice is set for 10:30 a.m. with the game slated for 7 p.m. at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

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Minnesota Wild forward Jason Pominville has been honored as the NHL "First Star" for the week ending on Sunday.  He tied for the league lead in goals and points for the week, helping Minnesota to four out of a possible six points in the standings.  He scored in each of the three games of the week.  Overall, Pominville is third in the NHL in goals scored for the season with ten tallies, and also leads the Wild with 12 points and a plus-six rating in 15 games.  Marc-Andre Fleury of Pittsburgh was the "Second Star" and Jason Chimera of Washington earned "Third Star" honors.

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The University of Minnesota men's and women's hockey teams each remained unanimously atop this week's respective USCHO.com national polls.  The Golden Gopher men were idle last weekend and will play at No. 4 Notre Dame this weekend.  St. Cloud State moved up six spots to No. 3 in this week's men's poll after sweeping North Dakota last weekend.  Minnesota State-Mankato is ranked 18th this week, down two spots; while Minnesota-Duluth held steady at the No. 20 slot  The Golden Gopher women are the lone Minnesota program in the top ten.

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