Sloane Stephens
Sloane Stephens (Courtesy of WTA)

Sloane Stephens, ranked 957th early last month after returning to the tour after an 11-month injury layoff, topped No. 15-seeded Madison Keys, 22, in straight sets in the U.S. Open final Saturday to capture her first Grand Slam title.

Stephens, 24, who defeated Venus Williams in the semifinal, joins an impressive group of African-American champions that began with Althea Gibson 60 years ago.

In addition, she becomes the first American woman whose surname is not Williams to snag a Grand Slam singles title since 2002 when Jennifer Capriati won the Australian Open.

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This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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