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Soccer Christine Sinclair scores 175th international goal for Canada as team advances to CONCACAF semi-finals

Christine Sinclair scored her 175th international goal and Canada beat Costa Rica 3-1 on Thursday to finish the group stage undefeated and advance to the semi-finals at the CONCACAF Women’s Soccer Championship.

Sinclair, who can overtake American Abby Wambach for the most international goals with another 10, put Canada ahead 3-0 in the 57th minute after first-half markers from Janine Beckie and Nichelle Prince.

Gloriana Villalobos put Costa Rica on the board in the 73rd minute.

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Canada opened the tournament – which serves as a World Cup qualifier for North and Central America and the Caribbean – with a 2-0 win over No. 64 Jamaica on Friday. The No. 5 Canadians downed No. 88 Cuba 12-0 on Monday in their second group match.

Canada finished atop Group B and is slated to face Panama on Sunday. Jamaica will take on the top-ranked and Group A-winning U.S. in the other semi-final.

The knockout stage, which wraps up Oct. 17, will take place in Frisco, Texas.

The top three finishers qualify automatically for the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France, while the fourth-place team will meet Argentina in a playoff to see who joins them.

The U.S. has won the regional championship seven times while Canada won twice (1998 and 2010).

Canada outscored its opposition 24-3 in finishing runner-up to the United States at the most recent CONCACAF women’s tournament in 2016, which served as an Olympic qualifier.

Canada has won all 13 of its meetings against Costa Rica, including a 6-0 victory over the Central Americans in Toronto in June, 2017.

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