It took just two days at the 2014 U.S. Open to get one of the best moments of the year.
While top seeds were steamrolling their opponents at Flushing Meadows, 15-year-old CiCi Bellis was quietly going toe-to-toe with No. 12 seed Dominika Cibulkova, setting history on a non-television court.
That's right, the person in the middle of this photo (from three years ago) defeated the person who made the final of this year's Australian Open:
Let's take a closer look at the youngster's unforgettable performance, as well as the rest of the thrilling action from New York.
Day 2 Results
|Arthur Ashe Day Session Winner||Opponent||Score|
|(8) Ana Ivanovic||Alison Riske||6-3, 6-0|
|(13) John Isner||Marcos Giron||7-6(5), 6-2, 7-6(2)|
|(3) Petra Kvitova||Kristina Mladenovic||6-1, 6-0|
|Louis Armstrong Day Session Winner||Opponent||Score|
|Sam Querrey||Maximo Gonzalez||6-2, 4-6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3|
|(7) Eugenie Bouchard||Olga Govortsova||6-2, 6-1|
|(4) David Ferrer||Damir Dzumhur||6-1, 6-2, 2-6, 6-2|
|(27) Madison Keys||Jarmila Gajdosova||6-0, 6-3|
|Arthur Ashe Stadium Evening Session Winner||Opponent||Score|
|(2) Roger Federer||Marinko Matosevic||6-3, 6-4, 7-6(4)|
|(1) Serena Williams||Taylor Townsend||6-3, 6-1|
Note: All scores from Monday's action can be found here, courtesy of USOpen.org
Day 2 Recap
Headlining the prime-time session was a pair of players with 17 majors and five U.S. Open titles under their belts.
"I just want to be like Mike," Matosevic says and points to Jordan. Getting his fun in while he can. #USOpen2014— Steve Tignor (@SteveTignor) August 27, 2014
It wasn't always perfect for Fed-Ex, who was down a mini break in the third-set tiebreak, but he had his backhand working for much of the night:
With Novak Djokovic struggling over the last couple of tournaments, Federer entered as many pundits' favorite. After being broken just once against a solid competitor in Matosevic, there's no reason to alter that view.
Serena Williams was just as successful, taking care of fellow talented American Taylor Townsend in just 55 minutes.
The story of the day, though, belonged to Bellis. Born in the same year that "The Matrix" and "Toy Story 2" first graced the silver screen, the teenager looked like a seasoned veteran, as she ignored a growing crowd and held off Cibulkova in a tense third set.
ESPN Stats & Info put the unbelievable debut into historical perspective:
American CiCi Bellis is the youngest woman (15) to win a U.S Open match since Kournikova in 1996 after she beat #12 Dominika Cibulkova today— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 26, 2014
“I went into the match thinking it was going to be such a great experience, but I never thought I would come out on top winning,” the 1,208th-ranked Bellis told reporters, via the New York Times' Lynn Zinser. “I’m still in shock about that match.”
Bellis now faces Zarina Diyas, who is also making her U.S. Open debut. It's a win-able match, but no matter what happens, Bellis has entered the history books at Flushing Meadows with an unforgettable showing of poise and talent.
CiCi Bellis is the W Star of the Day! http://t.co/qGERUkrlxs— Jane McManus (@janesports) August 27, 2014
The rest of the favorites on the women's side faired much better than Cibulkova, who was ousted from the first round of the U.S. Open for the second consecutive year.
In addition to Serena, No. 3 Petra Kvitova, No. 7 Eugenie Bouchard and No. 8 Ana Ivanovic each won in straight sets, looking extremely dominant in the process.
Kvitova was perhaps the most impressive of the bunch, as she nearly put a double-bagel on Kristina Mladenovic. As the New York Times' Ben Rothenberg noted, it's more of what we have seen from the World No. 4 over the last few weeks:
Wimbledon champ Petra Kvitova continues her form from winning the New Haven title, thwomping Mladenovic 6-1, 6-0 in just 54 minutes. #usopen— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) August 26, 2014
Bouchard and Ivanovic were nearly as impressive, dropping just three games in their wins over Olga Govortsova and Alison Riske, respectively.
For the men, John Isner, David Ferrer and Kei Nishikori all advanced as expected.
Looking forward to Wednesday, Venus Williams and Stan Wawrinka will be the main attractions during their second-round matches, but we also have this to look forward to:
Ryan Harrison would have to upset No. 7 seed Grigor Dimitrov for that happen, but it's safe to say the American just earned a lot more fans for his opener.
And if Bellis taught us anything on Tuesday, it's that anything is possible in New York.