Updated: Wednesday, 20 August 2014 08:02 | By Agence France-Presse

Riske upsets Pennetta at New Haven tennis

Unseeded Alison Riske became the first player to reach the quarter-finals by upsetting sixth-seeded Italian Flavia Pennetta 6-1, 7-6 (7/3) at the Connecticut Open on Tuesday.

Riske upsets Pennetta at New Haven tennis

American Alison Riske returns a shot to Flavia Pennetta of Italy during the Connecticut Open on August 19, 2014 in New Haven, Connecticut - by Elsa

American Riske, who never trailed in the second set tie-breaker, blasted eight aces and was a perfect five for five on break points in the 94-minute match at the WTA Tour event, a final US Open tune-up.

"There are a lot of top players here. I'm definitely proud to be the lone American left, and hopefully I can keep it rolling," she said.

"I knew that I had to attack her second serve because she places her first serve so well. I felt like I was going to get looks at it at any moment, so I just kind of stuck with it, and I ended up returning well today. I just played solid."

Riske jumped out to a 3-1 second set lead, but Pennetta was able to tie it at 3-3. The players held serve the rest of the way, setting the stage for the tie-breaker.

Riske snapped a four-match losing streak with a straight set victory over Casey Dellacqua in her tournament opener.

Riske next faces the winner of a match between top seed Simona Halep of Romania and Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia. Riske and Halep have never faced each other.

In other second round action Tuesday, Czech Barbora Zahlavova Strycova eased past France's Caroline Garcia in straight sets 7-5, 6-2.

Zahlavova Strycova had two aces, went four-for-five on break points and saved 12 of 13 on her own serve in the one hour, four minute match.

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