MIAMI, Fla.—Jessica Pegula has the home-court advantage at the Miami Open, and she very much played like it in her 6-1, 7-6 (0) third-round victory over Danielle Collins on Saturday afternoon.

The daughter of Kim and Terry Pegula—owners of the NFL’s Buffalo Bills—the world No. 3 has fond memories of going to watch the team over the years at the Hard Rock Stadium, which has hosted the WTA 1000 event since 2019.

“I've been here quite a bit,” Pegula told press after the match. “Usually the only games I get to go to are the Miami [Dolphins] home games—for the Bills, it's an away game—and I do the same thing. I drive to Hard Rock Stadium and I get to walk through the hallway, I go up to the suite and I watch.”

Pegula has gone into full commuter mode while in South Florida, forgoing the swanky downtown hotels normally reserved for WTA and ATP players in favor of staying at home in nearby Boca Raton and driving herself to the office. Away from the bustle of Brickell, Pegula has been in her own “work” bubble: Sticking to her usual routines and pre-match preparations, and avoiding the bright lights and celebrity of the Magic City.


“It feels like a job, like commuting,” she grinned. “I'm commuting to work every day. It feels a little bit different than at a hotel.”

“I have to stay on top of myself,” she added. “Even laundry, I'm doing my laundry at home. It's just weird because I'm used to going to the courts, doing my laundry, and picking it up. Then I am like, Oh, shoot, I need to wash my match outfits!

“I think any time I can get to be home, I definitely don't take that for granted, and I appreciate being able to stay here when other people can't go home at other tournaments.”

Pegula looked right at home on center court, too, up against last year’s Australian Open finalist in Collins. The 29-year-old took early control of the rallies to attack Collins’ serves, and was rewarded with three breaks of serve in the opening set before her opponent eventually, and inevitably, raised her level.

“I think any time I can get to be home, I definitely don't take that for granted," Pegula said.

“I think any time I can get to be home, I definitely don't take that for granted," Pegula said.


“Right from the very first game, I was super aggressive on the return game, which I think made her feel the pressure, and then I started serving really well,” Pegula told Tennis Channel’s Prakash Amritraj after the match.

“I think I was pressuring her serve a lot in that first set, and that was frustrating her. But then she was able to start serving really well in the second set, and then obviously I had to win in a tiebreaker.”

Collins, who in 2018 became the first qualifier ever to reach the semifinals in Miami, gave Pegula a stern challenge at 2-1 in the first set but seemed to slump after failing to convert on her two break point opportunities. She soon got back on track in the second, staying toe-to-toe with Pegula and saving three match points to send them into a tiebreaker.

But Pegula kept her cool and—perhaps in a rush to avoid traffic on the Florida Turnpike—reeled off the next seven to close out the victory after an hour and 26 minutes in the all-American matchup.

The No. 3 seed will be back in action on Monday, facing No. 20 seed Magda Linette for a spot in the quarterfinals.