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FC Kansas City pair help US U-23 win Istria Cup

A pair of game winners for Groom and a shutout for Rowland helped the U-23's take the Istria Cup and receive some valuable experience.

Groom will be needed to step up and score for the Blues in 2016
Groom will be needed to step up and score for the Blues in 2016
Thad Bell

FC Kansas City's Shea Groom and Katelyn Rowland were with the U.S. U-23 National Team at the Istria Cup in Croatia, one of several Women's National Team tournaments taking place around the world.

The U.S. U-23s beat the full Slovenia Women's National Team 3-0 on March 2, drawing the Poland U-19 team on March 4 and defeating the France National "B" Team 2-0; they compiled seven points and win the eight-team competition.

Groom started in both U.S. wins, scoring the game winner each time. The feisty forward subbed in late in the other match but did not have time to find the back of the net. Rowland was in net in the second match and was not greatly tested but kept a clean sheet to earn a draw.

Against Slovenia, Groom intercepted a pass between the center-backs and ended up one-on-one with the goalkeeper where she slid a shot into the left corner in just the 11th minute.

Versus France, she scored her second goal of the tournament when she ran behind the defense to receive a chipped pass from Caprice Dydasco. Again Groom went one-on-one with the goalkeeper and slotted into the left side of goal.

Good news for FC Kansas City

Getting Shae into a good scoring groove is probably welcome news for defending NWSL Champion FC Kansas City. The Blues are shorthanded at forward with both Amy Rodriguez and Sydney Leroux missing the season while pregnant.

Groom had 4 goals and a pair of assists as a rookie in 2015 despite missing several weeks with a broken bone in her foot. The Blues will need production from her in 2016.