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|U.S. beats Russia to take third at the Women’s World Cup in Nagoya, Japan; Host Japan wins title over Canada|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
The United States defeated Russia, 5-2, in the third-place match at the Women's World Cup, held at the the Inaei Sports Center in Nagoya, Japan, May 21.
Both teams entered the bronze-medal match with 1-1 records from their pool competition. The U.S. finished the tournament with a 2-1 record, and Russia ended at 1-2.
The United States opened the dual meet with two straight wins.
At 48 kg/105.5 lbs., 2001 World silver medalist Stephanie Murata (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) beat Inga Karamchakova , 3-1, 2-1. 2004 Olympic bronze medalist Patricia Miranda (New Haven, Conn./Sunkist Kids) followed with a 1-0, 2-0 win over Ekaterina Krasnova at 51 kg/112.25 lbs.
Russia responded at 55 kg/121 lbs. with a pin, as Natalia Karamchakova stopped Sharon Jacobson (El Cajon, Calif./USOEC/Gator WC) in the second period.
The U.S. won the next two bouts to clinch the team victory.
At 59 kg/130 lbs., two-time World bronze medalist Sally Roberts (Colorado Springs, Colo./Gator WC) scored a technical fall over Larisa Kanaeva, 6-0, 9-1. At 63 kg/138.75 lbs., 2004 Olympic silver medalist Sara McMann (Iowa City, Iowa (Sunkist Kids) shut out Anna Polovneva, 3-0, 7-0.
Russia won its second bout of the meet at 67 kg/147.5 lbs. In a battle of the two 2005 World bronze medalists at this weight class, Elena Perepelkina pinned Katie Downing (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) in the first period.
Closing out the dual meet t 72 kg/158.5 lbs., two-time World champion Kristie Marano (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC), 1-0, 4-0 pinned Alena Stardubtseva in the second period.
Host Japan won the team title, defeating Canada in the finals, 6-1. Both teams had 2-0 records going into the finals.
Japan won the first six matches in the tournament. One of the key bouts came at 55 kg/121 lbs. In a rematch of the 2004 Olympic Games finals, 2004 Olympic champion Saori Yoshida of Japan beat 2004 Olympic silver medalist Tonya Verbeek of Canada, 3-0, 6-0.
Canada's only victory came at 72 kg/158.5 lbs., where Ohenewa Akuffo beat five-time World champion Kyoko Hamaguchi of Japan, 1-0, 2-1.
China won the fifth-place bout, defeating Ukraine, 5-2.
The first session of the day was the final matches in each pool. In Pool A, Japan beat Ukraine, 6-1, to clinch its position in the finals. In Pool B, Russia edged China, 4-3, to take second in the pool and earn a spot in the third-place match.
The top six ranked national teams in the world in women's wrestling were showcased at the Women's World Cup. At the 2005 World Championships, Japan won the team title, followed by China in second, the United States in third, Canada in fourth, Russia in fifth and Ukraine in sixth.
Women's World Cup results