The Daily Tar Heel: What does the U.S. Open mean to you?
Jamie Loeb: It means a lot. I am from New York, and I grew up very close to the tournament, and I went to the U.S. Open every year.
DTH: What was it like growing up so close to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows?
JL: I felt at home during the tournament because it is so close to where I grew up in New York. It’s like a second home to me.
DTH: How often did you dream of playing there growing up?
JL: I always wanted to play in the tournament. I had trained in nearby facilities like the McEnroe Academy and played in qualifying matches, but not in the actual open.
DTH: What was it like fulfilling that dream?
JL: I was very anxious. I got a lot of texts from friends. It was really cool, especially to play in Arthur Ashe, one of the largest tennis stages in the world.
DTH: What was your reaction to your draw against Caroline Wozniacki?
JL: Obviously there are better draws, but I was very excited to play against such a well-experienced and established player and a formerly ranked No. 1 player in the world.
DTH: How did your UNC teammates and Coach Brian Kalbas help prepare you for this experience?
JL: They were very supportive and sent a lot of good luck texts. Also, Coach Kalbas and the other assistant coaches were there to cheer me on in Arthur Ashe Stadium, which meant a lot.
DTH: Who was there to cheer you on?
JL: My family and friends were there in the stands, which was very cool.
DTH: How did you feel when you first walked onto the court in Arthur Ashe Stadium?
JL: It was surreal. It was probably my favorite part of the tournament. Looking up and seeing all my friends and fans cheering me on was incredible.
DTH: What was your game plan going up against such a strong opponent?
JL: I knew I just wanted to play my game. I knew her backhand was her strongest and her forehand was not as strong. I wanted to be aggressive, attack her and play my game.
DTH: How will you use this incredible opportunity to help this year?
JL: I definitely want to work on my fitness, because so many of these girls are bigger than I am. That alone will help a lot.
DTH: Will you be back at the U.S. Open?
JL: I hope so. Obviously it depends a lot on my ranking and how I play this year, but I would love to be back at the U.S. Open.