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Keys KOs Svitolina, advances to quarterfinals

September 4, 2017 - Madison Keys in action against Elina Svitolina at the 2017 US Open.

WHAT HAPPENED: Madison Keys kept the possibility of an All-American semifinal round alive with a 7-6, 1-6, 6-4 win against No. 4 Elina Svitolina in the fourth round in Arthur Ashe Stadium on Monday.

Keys joined Venus Williams, Coco Vandeweghe and Sloane Stephens with each of the four in a different quarter. The last time four American women reached the quarterfinals was in 2002 when the Williams sisters along with Monica Seles, Jennifer Capriati and Lindsay Davenport all made it that far. Three of the four advanced to the semifinals with Serena beating her older sister in the final.

"I think it's great," Keys said. "I think it shows how hard we've been working. I think it's just really exciting. I'm really happy that none of us are playing each other in the quarterfinals. So yeah, I think if there's some all-American matchups in the rest of the tournament, I think that says really good things about women's tennis."

Neither Keys nor Svitolina played particularly well in the first set, with each being broken twice. Keys held a 3-0 lead but Svitolina quickly tied the score 4-4. Keys dominated the tiebreak winning seven of nine points to take the first set.

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Svitolina, 22, broke Keys twice and made three unforced errors to take the second set with relative ease.

Keys was down 4-2 before winning the final four games. She ended the match with a backhand winner.

"I for sure got it from these guys who were behind me and they definitely gave me the energy boost that I needed," said Keys, thanking the partisan crowd, most in attendance cheering on her comeback in the third set.

The 22-year-old American made the quarterfinals at Wimbledon in 2015 and the semifinals at the Australian Open that same year, but had lost in the fourth round at the US Open in each of the past two years.

Keys won in two hours and one minute, 11 minutes longer than it took Roger Federer win his fourth-round match in straight sets against Philipp Kohlschreiber in the first night match in Ashe.

"I went from being down 5-0 in the second set to kind of just making a lot of balls and being tough," Keys said. "Yeah, I'm really happy with how I closed out the match today."

WHAT IT MEANS: Keys will play qualifier Kaia Kanepi in the quarterfinals. Kanepi won their only previous meeting in Madrid in 2015.

Despite the loss, Svitolina, who recently broke into the Top 5, has been one of the best players on the WTA tour this season with five titles.

MATCH POINT: Can Keys, who hadn't made it past the fourth round at the US Open, advance to her first semifinal in Flushing?

Match stats