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Coco Gauff advances to first US Open quarterfinal

Coco Gauff of US celebrates victory in 4th round of US Open Championships against Shuai Zhang of China at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York on September 4, 2022. Gauff won in straight sets and moved into quarterfinals of the Open for the first time in her career (Photo by Lev Radin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

No. 12 Coco Gauff is through to her first US Open quarterfinal after defeating Zhang Shuai 7-5, 7-5 in front of a favorable Arthur Ashe crowd Sunday.

The 18-year-old’s stellar defense helped her overcome Zhang, the oldest remaining player in the US Open draw. The disparity in experience between Gauff and her 33-year-old opponent was hardly noticeable, as the American kept her poise in critical moments to charge into the Round of 16.

Gauff will again enjoy the support of the Flushing Meadows crowd when she takes on No. 17 Caroline Garcia, who bounced Alison Riske-Amritraj 6-4, 6-1 in her Round of 32 matchup.

Garcia boasts an impressive serve, logging eight aces and winning all nine of her service games against Riske-Amritraj. She will need to continue that type of service-game dominance if she wants to challenge Gauff, a talented baseliner.

“She already have some experience with the final in Roland Garros,” Garcia said of Gauff. “She’s aggressive but maybe from a little bit farther than I am. Big serve, huge serve, very powerful. Moving great. Very athletic.”

As the youngest American woman to reach the quarters since then-17-year-old Melanie Oudin’s 2009 run, all eyes will be on Gauff heading into the Round of 16.