By ALLIE COLOSKY
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
The two Windsor wrestlers grapple together at practice, getting extremely familiar with their weaknesses while simultaneously exposing their partners.
“They tear each other up at practice,” said Windsor head coach Rich Carnation. “They are both of such high quality and when they wrestle, it’s like wrestling a state-placer every day.”
For Beau Colombini and Dominic DuCharme, having each other as a training partner is what led them both to their eighth-place finishes at the CIF state tournament, and being selected by The Press Democrat as this year’s All-Empire Co-Wrestlers of the Year.
“We’ve been training together since we were little kids,” Colombini said. “We both hate to lose, so when we wrestle, it feels like a real match.”
Facing a No. 1-ranked wrestler every day at practice, Colombini said, has given them both the upper hand because it makes everything extremely competitive.
DuCharme and Colombini were two of the four Windsor wrestlers who qualified for the state meet. The Jaguars have dominated the North Bay League as well, claiming the past four Division 2 Redwood Empire titles and the North Coast Section title in 2014.
Finding the balance between their physical game and their technique placed both wrestlers at the top of the pack in the Redwood Empire.
“We hate getting scored on, so it makes it tough for us,” Colombini said. “I’ll be very physical with my opponents, but I had to get more technical because I was wrestling Dom every day at practice.”
Being better in a scramble has played to his advantage, DuCharme admitted, but with Colombini’s power, it creates a more competitive match every time.
“We both have different styles,” DuCharme added, “and that’s set us up during the season. It’s a battle every day.”
DuCharme entered the state meet ranked ninth in the 152-pound weight class, while Colombini was ranked 10th in the 160-pound group, according to The California Wrestler website. Both wrestlers won their first matches at the state meet and both wrestlers fell in the quarterfinals, to the No. 1 and 2 seeds, respectively.
Both overcame losses early in the year, as well, which did nothing but revv up the competitive fire in both wrestlers, Carnation said.
“They weren’t worried about their record and they weren’t worried about who they lost to during the season,” he added. “The ultimate goal was to be a state champion and they learned from those losses.”
DuCharme, for example, lost three matches and finished sixth at the Doc Buchanan Invitational in January, and it ignited a fire in the junior wrestler.
“I wanted to get better than the people who were ahead of me,” DuCharme said. “I had to get better.”
And he did.
With each other’s help, and the help of their state-ranked coaching staff, DuCharme and Colombini both excelled and claimed the North Coast Section titles in their respective weight classes.
Both juniors, these Jaguars have their sights on becoming the first Windsor wrestler to claim the ultimate CIF state title next year, and if they continue to grapple and fine-tune their technique with each other, Windsor High School could be seeing double.
“We just need to stay focused all summer and improve on different positions,” Colombini said about their already-set game plan.
In order to win the coveted state title, DuCharme said they needed to focus on the strong foundation they laid this season and move forward with an individual diagnosis of any flaws or weaknesses.
“I have to see where I’m at now, in order to become better than my opponents in the future,” he explained. “There’s a little pressure now because it’s my last shot to make it all happen.”
And focusing on their foundation from the top of the Redwood Empire is not the worst view.