For three and a half years Brawley Union High School wrestler David Villagran has been working almost endlessly to fulfill his ultimate goal of competing in the national high school wrestling tournament.
He came close a few times, making it to the state tournament twice, once his freshman year and last year as a junior, but he never placed in the top eight. Until now.
At the state meet in Stockton on Saturday, all the work the 17-year-old senior put in finally paid off as he took eighth in the 114-pound class, qualifying for nationals.
"If I wouldn't have placed and gone on to nationals, I don't know, I probably wouldn't have been able to sleep," said Villagran, who was 4-3 in the state tournament. "This was my third time going and finally all the hard work paid off."