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Vancouver wins MLS debut, 4-2 over Toronto FC

Mar 20, 2011 - 12:50 AM Vancouver, BC (Sports Network) - Eric Hassli scored twice to lead expansion Vancouver Whitecaps FC to a 4-2 victory over Toronto FC on Saturday at Empire Field in their debut in Major League Soccer.

Terry Dunfield and Atiba Harris also scored for Vancouver (1-0-0), one of two teams to join the league this season along with the Portland Timbers.

Dwayne De Rosario and Maicon Santos scored for Toronto (0-1-0), which lost the first-ever meeting between Canadian clubs in the league's history.

Hassli, signed as Vancouver's first-ever designated player earlier this month, scored the club's first-ever MLS goal in the 15th minute with a strong finish from inside the area to the left post.

Toronto equalized in the 20th through De Rosario, who beat an offside trap and drove a first-time shot from the right side of the area to the far post.

Dunfield put Vancouver back in front six minutes later, accepting a quick pass from Davide Chiumiento in the area before turning and firing from the right to the far post.

Whitecaps FC added its third goal in the 63rd when Harris took advantage of a failed clearance attempt by Toronto's Dan Gargan and converted from just a few yards out.

Hassli capped his memorable debut in the 72nd, making a long run into the area to accept a pass from Wes Knight for an easy finish into an empty net.

Santos pulled one goal back for Toronto in the 74th, but Vancouver easily held on over the closing minutes.

Vancouver will try to open the season with back-to-back wins March 26 at the Philadelphia Union. Toronto visits Portland on March 26.