SAN DIEGO — Of the estimated crowd of 7,500 people, only a few remained at the Michelob Invitational Sunday as Ramona High School pole vaulter Pat Alduenda sat on the running board and stared up at the bar, 16-feet 9-inches in the air.
Alduenda, a senior, had already won the event, having cleared 16-0--the highest ever by a San Diego County high school vaulter--but he wanted more. He wanted to break the meet record of 16-8 1/2 set in 1980 by Steve Stubblefield of Kansas City.
Workers were disassembling other parts of the track around Alduenda as he studied the bar. He had just missed his first attempt at a mark he wouldn't get. When he got up, the few fans left cheered as he prepared for his final two attempts. And they cheered when he finished.
"It would have been nicer if there were more people here," Alduenda said. "As soon as I made 15 (feet) I knew I was going to get 16."
Because the Michelob Invitational is not a sanctioned high school meet, Alduenda's mark was not considered a San Diego Section record.
"I want to go higher," he said. "A lot of people limit themselves by setting their goals too low. I think I could go 17 this year. Ever since my sophomore year, that's been my goal."
Alduenda wasn't the only high school athlete to have a record mark that isn't a record.
Pomona High hurdler Janeene Vickers--the top-ranked hurdler in the nation--ran 8.47 seconds in the 60-meter hurdles, bettering by 0.12 seconds the national record set in 1984 by LaVonna Martin of Madison, Ohio. However, Vickers' time was not considered a national record because the California uses 30-inch hurdles as opposed to the 33-inch hurdles used by the rest of the nation.
"It makes a world of difference," Vickers said about the shorter hurdles.
Mira Mesa's Darla Vaughn, the meet record holder with a time of 8.48 over 60 yards, was expected to challenge Vickers. But the matchup ended at the first hurdle, which Vaughn fell over. Vaughn, who failed to finish the race, said she had not run the hurdles since last track season. Stephanie Williams of the University of San Diego High placed second in 9.41 seconds.
Vickers also won the 500-yard dash in 1:07.3, 5.2 seconds ahead of runner-up Nicole Rothey of San Pasqual.
The most disappointing performance of the afternoon was that of Mount Miguel triple jumper Jackie Anderson. A year ago as a junior, Anderson set a meet and national record by jumping 41-0 1/2. Sunday, she scratched on all four attempts.
"We only had three minutes to warm up," Anderson said, "and I didn't have enough time to keep running through and get my steps. I never did get my steps right."
Los Gatos' Leslie Jensen jumped 36-8 1/2 to win and Grossmont's LaFrenia West went 36-0 for second.
Parade All-American football player Patrick Rowe of Lincoln won the 60-meter dash in 7.06 and anchored the Lincoln 640-yard relay team to a time of 1:06.7, 2.5 seconds off the national best.
Orange Glen's Glen Reyes, who ran 7.08 in the 60-meter dash to finish second to Rowe, won the long jump with a mark of 22-1 1/2.
In the two-mile, San Diego High's Marc Davis, the nation's top distance runner, ran away from the pack to win in 9:01, nine seconds ahead of runner up Paul Thomas of Sacramento Jesuit High.