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High school sports participation reaches 7.5 million

September 15, 2009 | 12:26 pm

Participation in high school sports grew for the 20th consecutive year and has reached an all-time high of 7,536,753, according to the annual survey by the National Federation of State High School Associations.

Swimming and diving gained the most participants in 2008-09, with an increase of 29,967, followed by track and field with 19,396 and cross country with 18,193. Lacrosse added 9,579.

Football remains the No. 1 sport for boys with more than 1 million participants, followed by track, basketball, baseball and soccer. Track passed basketball as the most popular girls' sport with 457,732.

Texas has the most participants with 781,000. California is second with 771,465.

-- Eric Sondheimer