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Friday, January 17
Updated: January 18, 12:34 PM ET
 
Auriemma: 'I want it to be a regular game'

Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn. -- When Connecticut (No. 2 ESPN/USA Today, No. 3 AP) faces Georgetown on Saturday, coach Geno Auriemma wants a win.

He could care less about setting any records.

"I want it to be a regular game," Auriemma said Friday. "We just go on and that's the way I want it. Our lives aren't going to change much after the game."

But the record books could. Should the Huskies beat the Hoyas, they will break the NCAA Division I women's record for consecutive victories. Connecticut tied Louisiana Tech's record of 54 straight wins (1980-82) with a 53-48 victory over Seton Hall on Wednesday.

UCLA holds the Division I men's record with an 88-game winning streak from 1971-74.

Auriemma says he doesn't care about numbers and doesn't remember other streaks. The one number he remembers is 98: how many times Connecticut has lost (versus 479 wins) since he became Connecticut's coach in 1985.

"I just carry around an unbelievable burden that if we ever lose a game, it'll be 'Oh, my God, he can't coach,'" he said. "I don't ever want to lose a game that we should have won."

Forward Diana Taurasi, the only returning starter from last year's 39-0 national championship team, said she's not worried about the streak. Auriemma likes to say that Taurasi has a 54-game winning streak -- the rest of the team has won 15.

"I'd rather not lose the game than be part of history," she said. ``I want to get out there and make history, but I want to go out there and play well."

The last four games have not been easy for the Huskies -- only one, against Virginia Tech, ended with a double-digit margin of victory -- and the Hoyas don't plan to roll over for Connecticut on its way to the milestone.

"I think you've got to be either deaf, dumb or blind not to understand the importance of this game," Georgetown coach Patrick Knapp said. "It's one of the best teams we'll play all year. We're going to enjoy it, but we're going to play to win."

Knapp and Auriemma coached against each other when Knapp was at Notre Dame and Auriemma at Virginia.

"We have weapons that can score, and they have weapons that can score," Knapp said. "We're just going to have to shut them down as best we can. Sometimes that's an individual and sometimes that's a team concept.'"

Whatever happens, Auriemma already has his postgame plans made.

"I'll shake Pat's hand, go into the locker room and then go out to dinner," he said.




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