Lacrosse Alumnae Excel for College Programs

Baird, Gooch, Kipp will join Wall Street firms after final season, graduation

The best season in Highland Park girls lacrosse history isn’t etched in the record books, because it barely happened.

In 2020, the Lady Scots were poised to contend for their first Texas Girls High School Lacrosse League crown. With a talented and experienced roster, they defeated defending champion Episcopal School of Dallas and other top teams. Then, the pandemic canceled the rest of the season.

Four years later, three standouts from that squad are senior captains of their respective college programs, still linked by what could have been — and still driven by title hopes entering their final year in the sport.

“I’m still really bummed to this day about that senior season,” said Emily Baird, now at Bucknell University. “We learned some life lessons, and it all worked out.”

After graduating this spring with a biomedical engineering degree, Baird will begin a career in investment banking on Wall Street. So will University of Denver senior Sloane Kipp and University of Michigan senior Josie Gooch.

They will all work for different firms, but it will be a reunion of sorts for the three former HP teammates who have remained close since their high school careers were cut short.

“We’ve had a lot of the same struggles and pain points,” Kipp said. “We all have different energy but some very similar qualities. We mesh really well.”

All three began playing lacrosse in youth programs in the Park Cities and secured college scholarships despite hailing from a state not considered a hotbed for the sport.

“The program sort of grew with us,” Baird said. “Our class was pretty close. A lot of us played club (lacrosse) together. We might not have been naturally brought together as friends, but sports formed this bond.”

The trio will often contact one another during the offseason or when they’re home on holiday breaks to share a workout or a meal.

Kipp earned her finance degree in three years but returned to pursue her master’s and play one final season. Denver, which advanced to the NCAA tournament semifinals last season, will travel to Michigan for a game in late February, enabling Kipp and Gooch to face one another.

“My approach to this season is to leave it all out there,” Kipp said. “I want to go into every practice and every game having no regrets. We’re ready to go.”

Indeed, each of the three has high hopes for their final year in lacrosse before transitioning to another field with just as much pressure and competition.

“Our work ethic is what drove us close together, having that determination and drive,” said Gooch, who will graduate with a business degree. “We’re all going to be working for different companies just like we play for different teams, but it will be nice to bounce ideas off each other.”

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