Serena Routs Sloane Stephens, Advances To Quarterfinals
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Serena Williams avenged her major loss to Sloane Stephens, pulling away from the young American for a 6-4, 6-1 win to return to the U.S. Open quarterfinals.
“She’s definitely a good player, so it felt like something bigger, but I just had to stay focused for the moment,” Williams said in an on-court interview.
In the rematch Sunday, the 16-time Grand Slam champion served big and controlled points against the 20-year-old. From 4-4 in the first set, Williams won eight of the last nine games.
“The whole time I just tried to do what I wanted,” she said. “Stay calm, stay relaxed, stay composed.”
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The 15th-seeded Stephens hung with the defending champ for most of the first set. After Williams broke to go up 4-2, she broke right back.
Serving at 4-5, Stephens had six of her 29 unforced errors. She was able to save two set points, but twice failed to capitalize when she had a chance to close out the game.
When Stephens hit a forehand wide, Williams had the set, and she took over from there.
“Obviously, she’s No. 1 in the world for a reason,” Stephens said. “I thought she played really well herself. Obviously, it didn’t go how I wanted. The second set got away from me a little bit. All in all, I thought I competed well and played well. That’s all you can do, really.”
Williams will face 18th-seeded Carla Suarez Navarro, who needed 2 hours, 41 minutes to edge eighth-seeded Angelique Kerber 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (3).
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