For the first time in Dow Tennis Classic tournament history, an all-American singles and doubles final have been set.

In the first semifinal of the day No. 3 seed and wild card Madison Brengle took on no. 1 seed and world no. 43 Mihaela Buzarnescu. Brengle took an early 5-2, before Buzarnescu broke back and rallied the first set to 5-4. Brengle was able to hold serve and close out the set 6-4. In the second set she continued her aggressive baseline play and took down the 29-year old Romanian 6-1.

“She can really dictate from the middle of the court and she is a very good player,” said Brengle. “But I think I did a good job of playing from the middle of th court and competing.”

Brengle is currently ranked No. 90 in the world and reached a career high ranking of No. 35 in the world in 2015. Brengle has reached one final on the WTA Tour and has recorded top-ten wins over Petra Kvitova and Serena Williams.

In the featured night match, Jamie Loeb took on No. 2 seed and world No. 95, Jennifer Brady. Loeb and Brady played long and powerful rallies from the baseline. Brady took the first break, before Loeb broke back twice and closed out the opening set 7-4.

In the second set, Brady found some grit and dug deep to take the set 6-4 and force a final set. In the deciding set, Loeb overcame her frustration from the previous set and closed out the match with a final score of 7-5, 4-6, 6-4.

Loeb is currently ranked No. 153 in the world and reached a career high ranking of No. 139 in the world late last year. She holds 13 ITF Pro Circuit singles and doubles titles overall (seven in singles, six in doubles). This is Loeb’s best appearance at the Dow Tennis Classic with her only other showing resulting in a semifinal loss, but she is ready for the challenge that Brengle poses.

“I am not too concerned about what is happening on the other side of the court. I am just ready to do me,” said Loeb.

Brengle and Loeb have met on three previous occasions with Brengle leading their head-to-head record 3-0. The last time the two Americans batted it out was less than a year ago in the semifinals of a $60,000 event in Charlottesville, Va. with Brengle winning the match 6-3, 6-2.

Advancing to the semifinals in doubles were the teams of Kaitlyn Christian and Sabrina Santamaria, and Jessica Pegula and Maria Sanchez. Sunday’s Championship matches get underway tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. with the singles final, followed by the trophy presentation, and then the doubles final.

2018Austin Woodyfp