NATCHITOCHES, La. (NSUdemons.com) — Northwestern State pole vaulter Reagan Darbonne has been hearing Adam Pennington’s voice since middle school.

Darbonne, a four-time state champion pole vaulter at Hackberry High School south of Lake Charles, received tutoring from Pennington in the summers before her eighth- and ninth-grade seasons.

Now a college sophomore, Darbonne said it was Pennington’s voice that helped her qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships after clearing 13-8 ¼, a personal best and NSU record, at the NCAA East Preliminary Round two weeks ago.

Darbonne and fellow NSU jumper Jasmyn Steels will compete for individual national championships Thursday at the University of Texas in Austin.

“I thank God because without him I wouldn’t be here, and I also thank (Pennington) because I actually listened to him at Regionals,” said Darbonne with a smile. “We made it.

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