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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday July 30, 2019


Things didn’t go as planned for 15-year-old Coco Gauff on Tuesday at the Citi Open, but a pair of 17-year-olds picked up the slack and showed why all is well with American women’s tennis.

Caty McNally and Hailey Baptiste each notched their first ever WTA win and reached the second round at Washington, D.C.

Baptiste, a D.C. native who grew up about five minutes from the tournament’s site, stunned No.2-seeded Madison Keys 7-6(4) 6-2.


The No.283-ranked wild card was mobbed by spectators after the match. She actually began her training as a youth player at the site for the Citi Open before she moved to College Park and continued her training at the JTCC (Junior Tennis Champions Center).

"I’ve been coming to this tournament since I was five years old," said Baptiste, according to WTATennis.com. "I knew some of the people who used to work here, so they’d let me in the back gates.”

Baptiste was broken for 6-5 against Keys in the opening set but broke right back before taking the set in a tiebreaker.

She didn’t face a break point in the second set and broke Keys twice on three opportunities.


McNally, currently also in the draw as Coco Gauff’s doubles partner, also won her first WTA main draw match on Tuesday. The Ohio native defeated China’s Lin Zhu 6-4 6-2 in her fourth WTA-level match. McNally dropped first-round matches at Indian Wells, Miami and Wimbledon this year, but made good on her wild card today by breaking Zhu six times on 12 opportunities.

McNally will face Christina McHale in the second round, while Baptiste will face Kristina Mladenovic.

 

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