Windsor senior Dominic DuCharme, the All-Empire male wrestler of the year, spearheaded a dominant Jaguars team this season to a 15th place finish at the CIF state finals. Even more impressive was DuCharme’s third place individual finish in the 170-pound weight class at the state tournament.
“Dominic got tested all year long,” Windsor coach Rick Carnation said. “Dominic was the highest placer at state and he is the most accomplished wrestler in Windsor wrestling program history.”
At 5-foot-11, Ducharme, 18, positively progressed in technique, skill, strength and size throughout his high school wrestling career. Carnation said DuCharme was around 112 pounds as a freshman, 125 pounds as a sophomore, 154 pounds as a junior and 170 pounds as a senior. Through the varying weight classes, DuCharme utilized his technique and long arms to mollify opponents.
“Dominic stood out as a baby-faced freshman. Some of his success is innate ability,” Healdsburg coach Scott Weidemier said. “He just has all of the tolls. He really is that good.”
DuCharme said at age 5 he began partaking in Jiu-Jitsu, a skill he said has come in handy on the mat. He started wrestling at 10.
“Once I got to be bigger a lot of guys aren’t as smooth and are stiff,” DuCharme said. “I am a very technical wrestler. I use my technique to wither down opponents.”
Ducharme had an impressive 43-4 overall record this season. He finished in the top four in numerous prestigious preseason tournaments. He won the North Bay League 170-pound championship and was 9-0 against league opponents. He followed by winning the North Coast Section tournament before placing third in state with a 5-1 record at the CIF tournament.
Even with his success, according to numerous opposing coaches, DuCharme is very humble and has a dedicated work ethic.
“He doesn’t walk around with his chest pumped up,” Analy coach Ryan Stevens said. “Dominic is a good candidate to represent our sport.”
DuCharme’s older brother, Joe, wrestled at the University of Iowa and while Carnation received a lot of inquiries about him from major college programs, DuCharme choose to attend Cal State-Bakersfield in the fall on a partial athletic scholarship. He said the Roadrunners wrestling program felt right when he visited the campus and staying in California was also a small factor.
“I think the (Bakersfield) program can push me where I want to go, which is winning a collegiate national championship,” said DuCharme, who added that he might look into trying out for the Olympics or ply his trade in the MMA eventually.
“I’ll see where I’m at in wrestling in five years and see if I want to continue,” he said. “Not sure of my future with the sport. Time will tell if that (Olympics) is a realistic goal.”
DuCharme will almost certainly go up a weight class in college and likely wrestle in the 197-pound division, according to Carnation. DuCharme said he will need to improve his quickness in college and since he is flat-footed he doesn’t move around too much — a trait that might be a liability at the next level.
What lies ahead for DuCharme in college wrestling and beyond is unknown, but as he continues to mature and refine his style and improve his ability on the mat, success likely awaits.
Wrestler of the year
Dominic DuCharme, sr., Windsor (170-pound weight class)
106: Trevor Bagan, soph., Analy
113: Dakota Perez, sr., Ukiah
120: Jose Fernandez, fr., Upper Lake
126: Angelo Arcamo, jr., Casa Grande
132: Jake Butler, jr., Cardinal Newman
138: Samuel MacDonnell, sr., El Molino
145: Perez Perez, jr., Windsor
152: Joel Anguiano, sr., Healdsburg
160: Beau Colombini, sr., Windsor
170: Justin Thom, sr., Willits
182: Joe Valdez, sr., Windsor
195: Anthony Spallino, sr., Windsor
220: Dylan Miles, jr., Ukiah
285: Nicholas Iverson, sr., Ukiah
106: Blake Fredrickson, fr., Lower Lake
113: Dominic Montanez, jr., Healdsburg
120: Connor Brown, soph., Windsor
126: Matt Green, jr., Maria Carrillo
132: Andrew Nunez, jr., Healdsburg
138: Luke Ah-Yeung, jr., Windsor
145: Casey Frazier, soph., Cardinal Newman
152: Mason Levinson, sr., Cardinal Newman
160: Tyler Winslow, sr., Sonoma Valley
170: Cameron Casey, jr., Maria Carrillo
182: Noah Bartolome, jr., Sonoma Valley
195: Perliss Brooke, soph., Lower Lake
220: Kameron Chase, sr., Casa Grande
285: Gunnar Hayman, jr., Cardinal Newman
Coach of the Year
Rich Carnation, Windsor