CiCi Bellis crouched to her knees and put her hand to her chest with a glazed look of utter disbelief. Then she leapt and skipped in the air.
It was reminiscent of her exuberance two years ago, when she burst onto the national scene in the first week of the United States Open with a stunning upset over 12th-seeded Dominika Cibulkova. At age 15, she was the youngest U.S. Open main-draw winner since Anna Kournikova, also 15, in 1996, and the New York crowds swooned at the sight of a teenager starring on such a stage.
Back then, though, Bellis was just a one-match wonder. On Wednesday night, Bellis, now 17, showed she that she now has some staying power.
With a 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 defeat of her fellow American Shelby Rogers, Bellis, whose given name is Catherine, moved into the third round, her best performance in a Grand Slam event. She will meet Angelique Kerber, the No. 2 seed, on Friday in what would surely qualify as the biggest match of her…