After injury knocked him out of national tournament contention a year ago, world events looked like they might create similar issues for Dominic Ducharme in 2021.
But after enduring weeks of turmoil to get to this point, the Cal State Bakersfield senior wouldn't be denied in his quest to capture a Pac-12 title Sunday.
Ducharme executed a one-point escape in the second overtime period, then rode out the clock to earn a 3-2 win over top-seeded Ryan Reyes to win the 184-pound weight class at the Pac-12 Championships on Sunday.
Sunday was only the third official match the Roadrunners competed in this year, as they were forced to shut down operations in early Feb. 5 to comply with health and safely protocols brought on by COVID-19.
It was the second one-point win on the day for Ducharme, who also gutted out a 3-2 decision over Arizona State's Cade Belshay in the semifinals.
This marks the second time Ducharme has reached the NCAA National Tournament at 184, also doing so via an at-large bid in 2019. After moving up to 197, he was unable to compete at the Pac-12 Championships last season after sustaining a shoulder injury late in the regular season.
CSUB is hoping Chance Rich and Angelo Martinoni will be able to join him on the national stage, as both are still in the running for at-large bids.
Rich made it all the way to the finals in a loaded 133-pound weight class, eventually losing to 3-1 to Devan Turner of Oregon State.
Martinoni, who placed third at 141, has a chance to earn a national bid as well as runner-up Real Woods of Stanford may not have enough matches under his belt to qualify.
Both Rich and Martinoni will learn their fates on Monday, March 8, when the NCAA announces at-large national qualifiers.