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Sarah Darling Misses Out on ‘Rising Star,’ But Brad Paisley Sweetens the Blow [Watch]

Country singer Sarah Darling dueled it out on ABC’s ‘Rising Star’ on Sunday (July 13), but unfortunately, she didn’t make it to the next round.

Darling chose to sing Lee Ann Womack‘s ‘I Hope You Dance’ after judges urged her to showcase her range on the debut episode. And although she was pitch-perfect, she just missed out on the chance to move on.

In the battle episode, Darling dueled against Caro, Mich. native Megan Tibbets, who played an acoustic guitar and sang a riveting rendition of ‘Summertime’ from the Broadway show ‘Porgy and Bess.’ Tibbets finished her performance with a whopping 71 percent of the vote, while Darling waited her turn to sing — certainly a nerve-racking position to be in.

When the 31-year-old country newcomer took the stage, she looked angelic and relaxed in a flowing white dress. And while she didn’t show any signs of nerves, voting just did not come through for Darling. Although her duel partner Tibbets received votes from all three judges (Brad Paisley, Kesha and Ludacris), Darling only received a favorable nod from the country star, who hit the button at the last moment.

Darling came close with 69 percent of the vote, but didn’t quite make it. According to Paisley, “what she did, she did really, really well,” but Darling’s voice didn’t “project” as well as Tibbets’. However, the ‘River Bank’ singer is a huge fan nonetheless — especially clear after giving Darling a ‘thumbs up’ last episode. Kesha told the songstress that she “panicked” and couldn’t make up her mind during Darling’s performance, while Ludacris simply said she didn’t give it her all, and he wasn’t blown away.

To soften the blow of not making it on to the next round, Paisley sweetly asked Darling to sing with him at the Grand Ole Opry if the votes didn’t tally in her favor. Even though it’s heartbreaking that the talented hopeful didn’t move on in the singing competition, there is a silver lining behind the cloud of disappointment.

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Next: Watch Sarah Darling Perform on 'Rising Star'

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