DALLAS At high schools all across North Texas, parking lots are empty and campuses are quiet. Traffic is flowing through school zones and the normally-crowded hallways are wide open.

It's spring break for everyone except the spring athletes.

One of my friends is going to Padre, which is really fun, said Kaley Haney, a senior shortstop for JJ Pearce. And I know some people are going on vacation to Florida.

I love being here for my team, so there's no way I would ever leave and leave them stranded, added senior pitcher Madison Boyer.

At Jesuit College Prep, the track team had a light practice in preparation for a meet on Thursday. Head coach Bob Molyet said that more than half his team is gone this week for spring break.

The kids who are here over spring break are not just the kids who can't afford to go, Molyet said. They're the kids who are really serious about what they want to do in track.

It's pretty much like, if you want to improve and get better, you gotta be here, said Jesuit senior Ben Brownlee. And if it's not that big of a deal, then you can go. But if it's important, then I gotta stay here.

At the Episcopal School of Dallas, baseball players have the best of both worlds. Their coach, Troy Haugen, gave them a few days off on the condition that when they came back to practice Wednesday, they were ready to go.

We have good trust with our coach, and as long as we stay in line and don't mess up and take control of ourselves, he'll give us a break, said ESD senior first baseman Tiger Smith. But he told us today, if we come out lagging, he'll run us into the ground.

Smith said he and his teammates had their best practice of the season and that's saying something this week.

Twitter @tedmadden

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