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European pro soccer teams court Federal Way grad Kelyn Rowe
Soccer has taken Kelyn Rowe around the world and back. This spring has been no different for the 2010 Federal Way High School graduate.
After being named an All-American after his freshman season at UCLA in the fall, Rowe was selected to the United States U-20 World Cup qualifying roster and played in the CONCACAF Cup in Guatemala. During the tournament, Rowe led the Americans with three goals.
The impressive performance in Central America has opened plenty of doors for the 19-year-old, including a pair of trials this spring with elite professional clubs in France and Germany.
Rowe, who has taken the spring semester off from UCLA, paid his own way to Europe and practiced with the French club Stade Rennes last month. He recently finished another trial with German Bundesliga side FC Cologne.
Despite the trials, Rowe has not lost his NCAA eligibility. But, depending on how things work out in Europe or possibly Major League Soccer, Rowe could turn pro and leave UCLA. According to insiders, Rowe would likely be a high pick in the 2012 MLS SuperDraft.
“I want as many options as possible,” Rowe told the Seattle Times after training with Sounders FC last month. “If I can’t make it with a European team, and all the leagues in Europe are very hard to get to, I would definitely love to come back here and play in MLS. I’m never counting that out at all.”
During his freshman season at UCLA, Rowe finished with seven goals and led the Bruins with 10 assists. He was named the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year.
Rowe was also named to Soccer America’s All-Freshman first-team and to the 2010 National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Performance Subaru Men’s NCAA Division I All-American Team as a third-team selection.
Rowe finished the season ranked third in the Pac-10 and second on the team in points (24), fourth in the Pac-10 and second on the team in goals (seven), and second in the conference and first on the team in assists (10). Rowe also earned first-team NSCAA All-Far West and All-Pac-10 honors, as well as first-team All-Rookie honors from Top Drawer Soccer.
During his training with Stade Rennes, Rowe told YA from France that he is learning a lot while in Europe.
“After these two days I know I have much more to work on to get to the highest level in Europe,” Rowe explained. “But that is why I am here doing what I am doing. I want to train myself at a high level and learn from the players above me to hopefully soon be playing aside them.”