Serena Williams ended a difficult-for-her Grand Slam season in the best way possible, winning her third consecutive US Open title by beating Caroline Wozniacki 6-3, 6-3 today. At the top of her game, Williams broke Wozniacki's serve five times and compiled a hard-to-believe 29-4 edge in winners. Remarkably, until a cross-court backhand on the run in the final game that even Williams applauded, the only winners registered by the 10th-seeded Wozniacki came on a trio of aces, one in the first set, two in the second. That was, in part, a result of the Dane's iffy play in only her second Grand Slam final—she lost to Kim Clijsters at the 2009 US Open—but more due to Williams' relentless pursuit of every ball.
Williams has now equaled Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova with 18 major singles titles, the fourth-most in history. Williams also matched Evert's total of six championships at the US Open and became the first woman to win three in a row since Evert's four-title run from 1975-78. Williams earned $4 million, a record in tennis—$3 million for the title, plus a $1 million bonus for having had the best results during the North American summer hard-court circuit. It was a dominant performance to cap a dominant two weeks in Flushing Meadows. Not only did Williams, ranked and seeded No. 1, win all 14 sets she played in the tournament, she never even dropped more than three games in any of them. (Read more Serena Williams stories.)