The all-American duo of Sofia Kenin and Bethanie Mattek-Sands fought their way to their second WTA doubles title of the year on Sunday, capturing the WTA 1000 Miami Open crown with a 4-6, 7-6(5), [11-9] victory over No.2 seeds Gabriela Dabrowski of Canada and Erin Routliffe of New Zealand.

"We went through it all today," Mattek-Sands said, after the back-and-forth affair. "You really want to be flexible and adaptable and be grounded in that moment, and I feel like that will get you [through] whether you’re up or you’re down."

From alternates to champions: The narrow triumph, which took exactly two hours to complete, wrapped up a magical path through the event for Kenin and Mattek-Sands. The Americans were the first alternates into the main draw, grabbing a spot only after the withdrawal of Marie Bouzkova and Sara Sorribes Tormo.

En route to the final, Kenin and Mattek-Sands needed a decisive match-tiebreak to prevail in three of their four matches. Sunday's final also went down to the wire, but the victors fended off a last-minute charge by reigning US Open champions Dabrowski and Routliffe to hold on once again.

Kenin and Mattek-Sands are now 7-1 on tour together this season, adding to their Abu Dhabi title from February. The Americans are one of only two teams to have won multiple titles so far this year, along with Australian Open and Indian Wells champions Hsieh Su-wei and Elise Mertens.

Title totals rising: This is Mattek-Sands' milestone 30th WTA doubles title, and her second Miami Open title. The former WTA Doubles World No.1 also took the Miami trophy in 2016 alongside her longtime doubles partner Lucie Safarova. 

Doubles titles are a less frequent occurrence for Kenin, as she hoists her fourth WTA doubles trophy and first in Miami. However, 2020 Australian Open singles champion Kenin is a perfect 4-0 in WTA doubles finals.

Having teamed up on and off over the last few years, Kenin and Mattek-Sands had already tasted success together at WTA 1000 level. In their very first appearance as a pairing, the duo won the WTA 1000 title at Beijing in 2019.

"We’ve played many tournaments together, we’ve always clicked together," said Kenin. "Bethanie’s got amazing hands so it’s very easy to do my job at the back, and I’m hoping that it’s easy from Bethanie’s side, to be at the net covering when I’m at the baseline."

Match moments: Pristine volleying by Dabrowski and Routliffe allowed them to break Kenin in the first game of the match, and they did not drop serve on the way to the one-set lead.

Kenin and Mattek-Sands built a 5-1 lead in the second set -- with Kenin's lob a particularly solid weapon -- but Dabrowski and Routliffe battled back to force a tiebreak. The Americans held firm in the breaker, converting their fourth set point with a deft forehand winner by Mattek-Sands.

Again, Kenin and Mattek-Sands found themselves in a match-tiebreak this week. The Americans used overpowering returns to reach triple championship point at 9-6, but Dabrowski and Routliffe came back once more, reaching 9-9.

However, a Mattek-Sands volley forced a wide error from Routliffe, setting up a fourth championship point at 10-9. Kenin and Mattek-Sands converted that chance after a missed volley by Routliffe, giving the team from the United States a home-soil victory.