NEW YORK (AP) - This one didn't come down to a foot fault, a referee's call or anything else that could've made Serena Williams mad.
Nope, just a feel-good Saturday night for a player who has had her share of injuries and turmoil over the past few years.
In what was supposed to be her toughest test yet at the U.S. Open, Williams dominated top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki 6-2, 6-4 in the semifinals to move a win away from her 14th Grand Slam title.
"For me, it's amazing," Williams said. "I've come a long way, a really long way."
Williams, who missed the better part of a year with injuries and illness, was back in the semifinals at Flushing for the first time since 2009 when, also on a Saturday night in Arthur Ashe Stadium, she got called for a foot fault against Kim Clijsters, then went on a tirade against the referee that cost her match point.
An ugly moment she'd love to forget - sort of the same way Wozniacki would like to forget almost everything that happened on a worst-case-scenario night for her in the world's biggest tennis stadium.
Her loss left No. 9 Sam Stosur as the last player with a chance to stop No. 28 Williams at a tournament in which she has lost a grand total of 29 games over six matches and hasn't dropped a set. Stosur beat Angelique Kerber 6-3, 2-6, 6-2 to reach her second Grand Slam final. They'll have a quick turnaround and play Sunday, with Williams going for her fourth U.S. Open championship on the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.
"It meant a lot to me to come out here as an American and still be in the tournament," Williams said. "I really wanted to play tomorrow. Such a special day for the United States, so I'm really excited."
Williams finished with 34 winners, compared to five for Wozniacki, though the clearest picture was painted early in the second set when Williams led 20-0 in that category.
That's typical of each player's game - Williams is about power and Wozniacki is about persistence - but the difference on this night was glaring and the contest turned into a mismatch.
"I never gave up. I was always trying to play the next point, the next point," Wozniacki said. "But Serena played very, very well today. She's in great shape. Hitting all her strokes. And that serve was a killer."
Williams finished with 11 aces.
Wozniacki did make it competitive for a brief moment, taking advantage of Williams' two loose shots and a double fault to pull to 5-4 in the second set.
But Williams answered with a forehand winner, then drove Wozniacki into the corner on two shots she couldn't get back. Five points later, it was over, and Williams was jumping up and down in the middle of the court to celebrate - a marked difference from the last time she reached this point.