HFX beat Vaughan 3-2 in first leg of Canadian Championship qualifier

VAUGHAN, Ont. — Mohamed Kourouma scored on a penalty kick in stoppage time, lifting the HFX Wanderers to a 3-2 road win over the Vaughan Azzuri on Wednesday in the first qualifying round for the Canadian soccer championship.

Tomasz Skublak and Akeem Garcia scored in the first half for the Wanderers, who host the Azzuri in Halifax in the second leg of the two-game series next week.

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Vaughan had erased a 2-0 halftime deficit with second-half goals before Kourouma's penalty.

The Wanderers, of the newly formed Canadian Premier League, controlled the game with 60 per cent possession and had 13 shots (three on target) to Vaughan's nine (four on target).

This year's Canadian Championship features an expanded 13-team, 24-match competition format. Canadian Premier League teams are participating in the tournament for the first time in the league's inaugural season.

There are five rounds total in the competition. The winner will earn the Voyageurs Cup after the second leg of the final round, which is scheduled for September.

In other first-round qualifiers Wednesday, Blainville and York 9 played to a 0-0 draw while Cavalry downed Pacific 2-0.

York and Cavalry host the second legs of their respective series next week.

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