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Captain Jordyn Huitema’s 83rd-minute goal lifted Canada to a 1-0 win over Germany on Sunday, moving the Canadian women into the semi-finals of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup for the first time ever.

The 17-year-old from Chilliwack, B.C., beat two defenders to knock in the winner.

The Canadians had never made it to the final four of the U-17 tournament, losing in the quarter-finals in 2014, 2012 and 2008 (when it was beaten 3-1 by Germany). Canada tied Germany 1-1 and 2-2 when they met in pool play at the 2016 and 2014 tournaments.

The young Canadians will play Mexico, which rallied to beat Ghana in a penalty shootout Sunday, in the semi-final on Wednesday. Canada lost 2-1 to the Mexicans in the CONCACAF Championship semi-final in June.

New Zealand faces Spain in the other semi-final Wednesday. As with Mexico, both teams needed penalty shootouts to reach the final four.

The only Canadian team, male or female, to do better at a FIFA world championship was in 2002, when Canada lost 1-0 after extra time to the United States in the inaugural FIFA U-19 Championship (now the FIFA U-20 Championship).

Canada had 58 per cent of the possession in a tight first half Sunday that saw only half-chances at Estadio Charrua. Neither team ventured much in attack.

Huitema had a rare chance in the 71st minute, getting in behind her marker but her shot was stopped.

Coach Rhian Wilkinson, returning to her first-string roster, made eight changes from the team that lost 5-0 to Spain in the final round-robin game. Canada went into that game knowing it had already qualified for the quarter-finals.

Only Kaila Novak, Lara Kazandjian and Jade Rose stayed in the starting 11.

Canada was boosted by the return of Huitema from a one-game suspension. Huitema was sent off in Canada’s 2-0 win over South Korea for an elbow during an aerial challenge.

Kazandjian had Canada’s first chance, in the 33rd minute, off a Huitema feed, but the shot was easily handled. Andersen Williams shot high in the 35th minute.

Canada drew Germany in the quarter-finals after losing to Spain on Wednesday. That dropped it into second spot in Group D. Germany then blanked the United States 4-0 to finish atop Group C, setting up the final-eight showdown with the Canadians.

Canada blanked Colombia 3-0 and South Korea 2-0 in its first two games at the tournament. Germany beat North Korea 4-1 and lost 1-0 to Cameroon.

Twenty players on Canada’s 21-woman roster saw action in the group phase, with only goalkeeper Sophie Guilmette yet to get on the field.

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