Venus Williams, Garbine Muguruza and Diego Schwartzman were among the notable names to advance in the 2017 US Open during early play Friday as the third round continued from the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York City.
Meanwhile, big-hitting American John Isner and the polarizing Maria Sharapova, who's playing her first Grand Slam tournament since serving a 15-month suspension for a failed drug test, will headline the night session at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Check out the complete list of results from Friday's action in the season's final major, which will be updated through the conclusion of play. That's followed by a recap of the top storylines. All match statistics are courtesy of the event's official website.
(3) Garbine Muguruza d. (31) Magdalena Rybarikova; 6-1, 6-1
(9) Venus Williams d. Maria Sakkari; 6-3, 6-4
(13) Petra Kvitova d. (18) Caroline Garcia; 6-0, 6-4
(16) Anastasija Sevastova d. Donna Vekic; 6-2, 6-3
(30) Julia Goerges d. Aleksandra Krunic; 6-3, 6-3
Maria Sharapova d. Sofia Kenin; 7-5, 6-2
Sloane Stephens d. Ashleigh Barty; 6-2, 6-4
Carla Suarez Navarro d. Ekaterina Makarova; 6-1, 3-6, 6-3
(29) Diego Schwartzman d. (5) Marin Cilic; 4-6, 7-5, 7-5, 6-4
(23) Mischa Zverev d. (10) John Isner; 6-4, 6-3, 7-6
(12) Pablo Carreno Busta d. Nicolas Mahut; 6-3, 6-4, 6-3
(16) Lucas Pouille d. Mikhail Kukushkin; 2-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4
(17) Sam Querrey d. Radu Albot; 4-6, 6-2, 6-4, 6-4
(28) Kevin Anderson d. Borna Coric; 6-4, 6-3, 6-2
Denis Shapovalov d. Kyle Edmund; 3-6, 6-3, 6-3, 1-0 (ret.)
Paolo Lorenzi d. Thomas Fabbiano; 6-2, 6-4, 6-4
Day 5 Recap
Schwartzman took advantage of a poor serving day from Cilic to make the No. 5 seed the latest high-profile player on the men's side to suffer an early upset. He joins a list that already includes Alexander Zverev, Grigor Dimitrov and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
The scrappy 25-year-old Argentine finished the match with just 30 winners compared to 48 unforced errors, but he came up in the clutch when it mattered. He converted nine of this 20 break-point opportunities to pull away after dropping the first set.
Cilic never found his rhythm from the service line. Only 55 percent of his first serves were successful and he won 32 percent of points off his second serve, which is always a problematic combination. Add in 80 unforced errors and he basically played himself right out of the tournament.
ESPN's Trey Wingo pointed out the massive height disparity in the upset:
trey wingo @wingoz
Score one for the little guys: 5'7" Diego Schwartzman takes down former US Open Champion 6'6" Marin Cilic2017-9-1 18:41:48
Schwartzman commented on that afterward, per Kamakshi Tandon of Tennis.com:
Kamakshi Tandon @Kamakshi_Tandon
Seeing some smaller guys making strides. Schwartzman, into 4R, says "Tennis is for everyone. Is not just for the tall guys."2017-9-1 20:20:43
John Isner, who entered the U.S. Open as the highest-ranked American player on the men's side, was ousted in the third by Mischa Zverev.
Isner was his own worst enemy in the loss, committing 41 unforced errors and having his serve broken three times. This marks the fourth time in five years the Florida native has been knocked out of the U.S. Open in the third round.
Zverev already had his best run at the U.S. Open by reaching the third round. His straight-set triumph over Isner was likely a welcome turn of events after needing five sets to win each of his first two matches.
Meanwhile, the Sloane Stephens Resurgence Tour cleared another key hurdle as she reached the fourth round of a major for the first time since the 2015 French Open with her victory over Ashleigh Barty. She's dropped just one set through three rounds.
It wasn't the most clinic performance for the 24-year-old American, who finished with three more errors (21) than errors (18) and just a single ace. But her return game was strong, winning six of her nine break points, the latest positive sign as she works back to full strength following January foot surgery.
Ben Rothenberg of the New York Times provided his thoughts on Stephens' latest win:
Ben Rothenberg @BenRothenberg
Sloane Stephens isn't back to her best: she's better than ever. Beats Barty 6-2, 6-4 to reach #USOpen R16. Faces Krunic or Goerges next.2017-9-1 18:38:17
Fellow American star Venus Williams also rolled through to Round 4. The seven-time Grand Slam champion survived a three-set scare in her opening match, but she's bounced back with two consecutive straight-set victories, the latest coming Friday against Maria Sakkari.
She'll need to improve her form if she wants to capture her first major title since 2008, though. Williams struggled with both her serve (eight double faults and no aces) as well as he groundstrokes (24 unforced errors and 10 winners) but won 50 percent of points on the return to move through.
US Open Tennis highlighted match point:
US Open Tennis @usopen
.@Venuseswilliams continues the excitement of the day with another great win! 6-3, 6-4 🎉 #USOpen @MBUSA https://t.co/tLxtgkvd5e2017-9-1 21:10:43
"Obviously I'm super excited. Words can't describe," new aunt Venus told ESPN before her win.
Sharapova's run as a wild card in the U.S. Open will continue into the fourth round after she knocked off Sofia Kenin in straight sets.
US Open Tennis @usopen
Night 5 ends with @MariaSharapova closing out Kenin 7-5, 6-2 in a tricky R3 match on Arthur Ashe Stadium! #USOpen @MBUSA https://t.co/GIUdSVTPKT2017-9-2 03:51:06
The Russian star overcame seven double-faults in the win. She did fire eight aces, compared to just one for Kenin, and won twice as many break points (six to three). The two also had what may end up being the best rally of the entire tournament in the second set:
US Open Tennis @usopen
POINT OF THE MATCH: Outrageous rally between @MariaSharapova and Sofia Kenin. #USOpen https://t.co/3R9ZmWNxN62017-9-2 03:41:11
Sharapova is playing in just her fifth tournament this season. The U.S. Open is her only chance to make a statement to the rest of the tennis world that she's still one of the world's best players.
There is still a long way to go, and she has some elements in her game to correct—it's hard to win against top-tier competition with 33 unforced errors—but Sharapova has given herself an opportunity to play into the second week in New York.