Hollie Cavanagh-AmericanIdolIf Hollie Cavanagh couldn’t see the end coming, “American Idol” viewers could, as she struggled through uneven performances and critical comments from the judges, once again, last night. Was anyone surprised she was sent home?

Although she put up a good fight and delivered some solid performances that seemed to lift her chances, the voters got it right.

Jessica Sanchez, Joshua Ledet and Phillip Phillips are the stronger contestants. Any of them could win the Idol crown; it’s that close.

Not that Hollie can’t have a career. She has pop-star looks and solid talent, and she’s only 18. A fourth place finish shouldn’t be an obstacle for her to advance her career. Rememba’ Jennifer Hudson?

Almost 70 million votes were cast–viewers can vote multiple times–with Wednesday night’s performances likely weighing heavily in the decision-making. Each contestant sang a song by a California artist and a song they wish they had written.

Cavanagh once again turned in an uneven performance. Her first song, “Faithfully” by rock band Journey, drew praise from the judges. Even former Journey band member Randy Jackson said she “did him proud.”

But her performance of Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” once again, triggered criticism from the judges. Proud Randy thought it was the “wrong choice at the wrong time.”

Jennifer Lopez said she poured on “a little too much vibrato,” while mentor Jimmy Iovine said Cavanagh “crashed and burned” with the song. Ha! He probably wants to sign her.

Cavanagh closed the show with Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb” and handled the elimination well. We should be hearing from her again.