STAMFORD — Marc DeLuca leaves Westhill High School a champion pole vaulter and an exemplary student.

That’s not how he arrived.

DeLuca was apathetic toward school and sports during most of his freshman year as his grades suffered and he dealt with dyslexia. But after a season with the football team made him feel a little more involved, he tried to cure his winter boredom by wandering into a track and field practice.

He now looks back at the moment when coach Neal Perryoffered him a spot with the team’s pole vaulters as a turning point in his high school career.

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