Women's Special Wrestle-off between Bacher and Marano to be held after the Olympic Games

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Gary Abbott (USA Wrestling)

WOMEN'S WRESTLE-OFF BETWEEN BACHER AND MARANO TO BE HELD AFTER THE OLYMPIC GAMES    One of the three Special Wrestle-offs for the No. 1 position on the 2000-2001 Women's Team USA has been switched to a date later this fall, after the Olympic Games.    The best-of-three series between 2000 U.S. Nationals champion Sandra Bacher (San Jose, Calif./Dave Schultz WC) and Kristie Marano (Albany, N.Y./ATWA) at 149.75 pounds, previously scheduled for August 13 in Evanston, Ill. has been delayed.    Bacher is a member of the 2000 U.S. Olympic Team in judo. She will not be participating on the U.S. team which will be competing at the 2000 Women's World Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria, Sept. 1-3 due to her responsibilities to the judo team. Marano will represent the United States at the World Championships at 149.75 pounds.    The Wrestle-off will be held at the 2000 Sunkist Kids International Open, scheduled for Nov. 3-5 in Tempe, Ariz. The winner will become the No. 1 ranked wrestler at the weight class and will receive the funding for the No. 1 position for the entire season.    Bacher is the defending Women's World Wrestling Champion at 149.75 pounds. She won U.S. National Championships in 1995, 1997, 1999 and 2000 and has won the World Team Trials the past five years.  She placed third in the 1998 World Championships, second in 1997 World Championships, fourth in 1996 and ninth in 1995.  She will be participating in her third Olympic Games in judo.    Marano earned the right to challenge Bacher in the Special Wrestle-off at 149.75 pounds when she defeated Toccara Montgomery (Cleveland, Ohio/Sunkist Kids) in the finals of the 2000 U.S. World Team Trials in Battle Creek, Mich. in June.  National champion Bacher was unable to participate in the World Team Trials due to injury and received an extension on her championship series.    Marano has finished second in the past four World Championships, competing at 165.25 pounds. She dropped to 149.75 pounds for the first time this year. She won the Pan American Championships in 1997 and was a Junior World Champion in 1998. Marano has won four career U.S. Nationals titles (1996-1999).    The Special Wrestle-offs for the other two positions on the 2000 U.S. Women's World Freestyle Wrestling Team will still be held Sunday, August 13 at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.    At 112.25 pounds, 2000 U.S. Nationals Champion Stephanie Murata (Williamsburg, Ky./Sunkist Kids), will face Patricia Miranda (Saratoga, Calif./Dave Schultz WC). 2000 U.S. Nationals runner-up Malissa Sherwood (Rocklin, Calif./Dave Schultz WC) will wrestle Tina George-Wilson (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) at 123.25 pounds.    The first session of Wrestle-offs will begin at 10:00 a.m. with the 112.25 pound match. The second round will begin at 1:00 p.m. If a third match is required it will be conducted during the second round, after the athletes have received their required one-hour rest period.     The U.S. Women's World Team is the defending World Champions going into the competition in Bulgaria.