When she smacked a forehand winner on her third match point, Oudin dropped her racket, raised her arms, and looked at the sky while nearly 24,000 at Arthur Ashe Stadium roared.
"Today there are no tears because I believed that I could do it," the rapidly maturing 17-year-old said after reaching her first major quarter-final with a 1-6, 7-6, 6-3 victory over Nadia Petrova, her fourth straight against a Russian.
"Now I know that I do belong here. This is what I want to do, and I can compete with these girls no matter who I'm playing. I have a chance against anyone."
In Image: Melanie Oudin of the US reacts against Nadia Petrova from Russia during their 4th round US Open match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center September 7, 2009 in New York.
Images: AFP (Unauthorised reproduction prohibited)