Lakoda Rayne, the hastily put together girl singing group featuring Wall High School singer Cari Fletcher was eliminated from competition on Simon Cowell's X Factor.
The group received the least number of audience votes from Tuesday's round of competition. The girls were the first of two acts to be eliminated from the show Wednesday.
"I just feel so bad for them,'' said Lauren Greco, Fletcher's vocal coach and also a Wall resident. "I know they all wanted this more than anything.''
The grand prize of the show is a $5 million recording contract and a starring role in a Pepsi commerical to be shown during next year's Super Bowl.
"They really put their hearts and souls into everything and I'm certain they're going to do big things in the future,'' Greco said.
Greco said she has spoken to Fletcher in the time the varsity Volleyball co-captain has been in California performing. Greco said Fletcher was confident in the song choices and in the group's performances.
"With all the experience they've gotten and all the people they were able to meet, that is worth so much,'' Greco said. "And they're going to take that and move forward and I think you'll hear from them in the future.''
The group on Tuesday's show performed the smash hit song "You Belong To Me'' by the grammy-winning Taylor Swift. Cowell said it was "by far your best performance to date.''
"I'm not going to say the vocals were perfect,'' he continued. "You are four really sweet girls and I wish two (acts) weren't going home tonight.''
The group's mentor, judge Paula Abdul, was moved to tears and could barely speak following the performance.
"The sky is the limit,'' Abdul said through tears.
Judge Nicole Scherzinger had high praise.
"I felt like I was watching you in concert,'' Scherzinger said.
Judge L.A. Reid was equally complimentary.
"I was prepared not to like it,'' Reid said. "But once again, you disarmed me.''
But the judges' opinions mattered little. It was the audience votes that determined who would go on through to the next round. And it wasn't enough for Lakoda Rayne.
The group was put together rather unexpectedly following an early round of competition on the show. Each of the girls in the group, including Fletcher, already had been cut.
But in a surprising move, Cowell announced the four would be grouped and allowed to continue in the show as a group act.
Lakoda Rayne quickly had to assume a name and an identity and learn how to behave as a group act, not a collection of solo artists. They survived round after round of competition.
"I think they did a really nice job and they blended quite well,'' Greco said. "But they absolutely will be doing something in the future.''