CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Andrea Petkovic remembered why she started playing tennis and along the way gave everyone else a reminder about how talented she is when shes at her best. The 26-year-old from Germany, who fell from ninth in the world in 2011 to 177th two years later, capped a stunning run to the Family Circle Cup title on Sunday, Petkovics first win in three years. She outlasted Jana Cepelova 7-5, 6-2 in the finals. "I just wanted to get back to why I started playing tennis, because I had fun playing it and because I love the sport," said Petkovic, whose progresses was slowed by several injuries that cost her much of 2012. The climb back was painful at times. Petkovic wanted to quit the game after falling in French Open qualifying last year and wondered if shed ever feel success at the sport again. So she decided to play for fun and not for the wins. "I just needed to remind myself and it came together this week, and Im very thrilled about that," she said. Petkovic entered this one seeded 14th, ranked 40th in the world and with few expectations about her first clay-court event of the season. Instead, Petkovics powerful forehand and grind-it-out mindset helped her oust three straight top 10 seeds in No. 4 Sabine Lisicki, No. 9 Lucie Safarova and No. 6 Eugenie Bouchard on the way to the finals. Petkovic used that same formula against Cepelova, a rising 20-year-old from Slovakia competing in her first WTA final. Cepelova led 5-4 and was a point away from capturing the first set. But Petkovic rallied to win that game and begin a run of eight in a row to take control of the match. "I have to let loose and play like I can," she told herself. Petkovic was energized after winning the crucial game and quickly broke serve to move in front. She took the set a game later and continued her run to build a 5-0 lead that Cepelova could not overcome. For Petkovic, the victory was more gratifying than her two other career WTA wins because of all her struggles. This "is a different feeling," she said. "Now, Im much more grateful. Its more rewarding." Petkovic dropped to the ground when Cepelovas final shot landed out of play. She jogged to the net to hug her opponent, waved to the crowd and did a celebration dance as fans applauded. She let her fun side shine through all week. She joked in postgame comments she might get a bit crazy on the flight back home, dancing with flight attendants and drinking champagne from her latest trophy. "Im going to have champagne and I dont even drink champagne," she said. "But Im going to have it for the heck of it." Petkovic earned $120,000 for her third career WTA victory, which was her first since winning in Strasbourg in 2011. Petkovics victory closed a week of surprises at the Family Circle Tennis Center. Only one of the tournaments top 10 seeds made it through to the final four and it was the first time a WTA tournament included three semifinalists 20 years old or younger since Amelia Island in 2008. Cepelova had a stunning run of her own, topping world No. 1 Serena Williams on Tuesday night to set the stage for plenty more unexpected results. Cepelova became the Family Circle Cups first unseeded finalist since Elena Vesnina in 2011. Cepelova didnt expect a long visit here, arriving without her coach, trainers and hitting partners. She typically ordered room service at the hotel and had to scrape around to find hitting partners to warm up before matches. "Before the tournament, if somebody told me youll be in the tournament finals I would not believe them," Cepelova said with a smile. "But it was a really nice week." Cepelova is also projected to move up some 30 spots in the rankings to around 50th in the world when the new list comes out next week, the WTA said. Petkovic won the title in her second appearance here. She had reached the round of 16 last year, but had to withdraw from a match against Caroline Wozniacki. She was on the phone with her father, Zoran, after the win. Father and daughter now have Palmetto State success in common. Zoran Petkovic was one of the leading singles players at the University of South Carolina in the early 1980s. He told his daughter stories of how Americans on campus loved wearing "cowboy boots and blue jeans," she recalled, laughing. "He was very happy, very emotional," Andrea Petkovic said of their phone call. "I dont know if he was tearing up, though." Cheap Nike Air Max Outlet .com) - Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion has been named the American League Player of the Week for the period ending May 11. Nike Air Max Cheap Sale .ca. 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Brett Bellemore, Jiri Tlusty and Andrej Sekera also scored, and Jeff Skinner had two assists to help the Hurricanes win their seventh in 10 games. "Its a little bit more fun when youre playing with the lead," Nash said. "In this league, especially, its tough to come from behind every night, so getting that lead is especially important." Carolina improved to 30-7-4 at PNC Arena against the Panthers, winning both meetings this season. Realignment sent the former division rivals in different directions, with the Hurricanes in the Metropolitan and Florida in the Atlantic. Carolina pulled even with fifth-place Washington with 61 points in its crowded division, while Florida remains firmly in seventh place in the Atlantic. "Its really disappointing to see where our expectations are, and my expectations and everybodys expectations have to be on the same page, and I think we have to raise them," Panthers coach Peter Horachek said. "We have to expect more from each other, and I expect more from them because its certainly not desperate hockey, and its certainly not where it needs to be." Eric Staal set the Hurricanes career record for shots on goal, passing Hall of Famer Ron Francis late in the second period. Staal finished with four shots, giving him 2,542. Anton Khudobin stopped 34 shots in his 16th straight appearance for Carolina. Nick Bjugstad scored for Florida, which enters the Olympic break having lost five of six. "We put ourselves in this situation," captain Ed Jovanovski said. Tim Thomaas stopped just 10 of the 14 shots he faced.dddddddddddd He was pulled with 15:24 left in the second after Tlusty tapped in a rebound to make it 4-1. Scott Clemmensen replaced him and stopped 16 shots. Ten Hurricanes appeared on the score sheet and Skinner was the only one with multiple points. "To be successful in the NHL, you cant rely on one line," Nash said. "You see the teams that had success in the past, win Stanley Cups, they have four lines that chip in and they have their big guns going like we do. Its been nice to see." Carolina pounced on the Panthers early in this one, with Nash and Semin striking in bang-bang fashion. Nash scored at 9:17 of the first when Tuomo Ruutu dug the puck out near the boards and slipped it toward the slot to Nash, who beat Thomas high. Semin then made it a two-goal game at 10:44 with a spinning wrist shot -- his third goal in two games this season against Thomas and the Panthers. "That was actually the game plan -- come out, just stay on them, get pucks behind them," Bellemore said. "Get shots to the net, keep getting chances and wear them out." After Bjugstad pulled Florida to 2-1 with a wrist shot that trickled past Khudobin, Bellemore restored Carolinas two-goal lead with a slap shot with 1:39 left in the first. "Once we got the lead, we kind of backed off and started to play a little more pond hockey," Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller said. "Game got a little bit too open for us and it was an up-and-down kind of game, so we just had to tighten it up at times." NOTES: Staal, who assisted on Tlustys goal, has 36 points in 35 games. ... Ruutu skated in his 600th career game. ... Carolina improved to 16-1-4 when scoring first. ... Bellemore and Florida D Erik Gudbranson slugged it out with 5:29 left in the second. Bellemore ended the fight by slamming Gudbranson to the ice. 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