Canada have edged Brazil to the gold medal at the Pan American Games winning a penalty shoot-out following a 1-1 draw in Guadalajara on Thursday.

Karina LeBlanc was the hero making two saves in the shoot-out as Canada triumphed 5-4 on penalties.

Christine Sinclair had drawn Canada level with just two minutes remaining after young Brazilian striker Debora had scored inside the opening five minutes.

Brazil and Canada had earlier drawn 0-0 in the group stage of the eight-nation tournament.

It was a measure of redemption for Canada in their first tournament since a disappointing first round exit at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup™.

The South Americans were without five-time FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year Marta for the tournament, but otherwise fielded many of their Germany 2011 squad.

“We always somehow come up short against the top-tier teams,” LeBlanc said. “I think what’s big about this win for us, is that they scored first and we didn’t fold. We continued to play soccer, we continued to believe, and we never gave up.

“And after the World Cup, we needed something to make us believe that we can take this step forward. And I think that’s what this is.”

Host nation Mexico edged a 1-0 win in the bronze medal match against Colombia thanks to an extra-time winner from Jennifer Ruiz.