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Giovinco has 2 goals, assist; Toronto tops Orlando City 3-2

Orlando City’s Cyle Larin (9) moves the ball past Toronto FC’s Jason Hernandez (12) during an MLS soccer match Wednesday, July 5, 2017, in Orlando, Fla. (Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel via AP)

ORLANDO, Fla. — Sebastian Giovinco scored twice and set up Jozy Altidore’s goal to help Toronto FC beat Orlando City 3-1 on Wednesday night.

Toronto FC (11-3-5) moved a point ahead of Chicago for the Eastern Conference and overall MLS lead. Chicago tied 2-2 at Portland.

Altidore scored his eighth goal of the season in the 18th minute. Giovinco split two defenders near the midfield circle, drew two more defenders at the top of the box, and found a wide open Altidore for a calm finish under Joe Bendik’s legs.

“I know we hit it out of the park in terms of playing two players that are different, but alike in some ways,” said Altidore on his chemistry with Giovinco.

“We just compliment each other really well. I think it’s hard to find two strikers like that. First to be able to do it year after year for the past three years I think it is pretty special. Hopefully we could keep doing it, keep going, and keep helping turn this team around.”

Giovinco made it 2-0 in the 46th. Altidore ran past the defence for a through ball and patiently waited to find a trailing Giovinco for a chipped finish.

“There is a good understanding about where each other is going to be,” said Altidore. “It’s a pleasure to play with him, every day is an enjoyment. He always has a smile on his face and it makes it very easy.”

Two minutes after Orlando pulled to 2-1 on Carlos Rivas’ goal, Giovinco scored on a free kick from distance in the 65th for his ninth goal of the season. He hit the crossbar on a free kick in the first half.

Giovinco also scored two goals in the first meeting between the teams on May 3.

Rivas, a halftime substitute, scored for Orlando (8-7-5) on a shot off the far post.