March 06, 2008 12:00 AM

It was the final ladies night before next week, when the top 12 guys and girls take the stage together for the first time, and Amanda Overmyer, the rock-loving nurse from Mulberry, Ind., had her best night so far in the competition.

After rocking a little too hard last week with “Carry On Wayward Son” by Kansas, Overmyer found a more accessible song — and a softer hairdo — during ’80s night Wednesday when she sang, “I Hate Myself For Loving You” by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts.

Judge Simon Cowell called it one of his “favorite performances of the entire competition” and then, at the end of the show, told Ryan Seacrest it was the best of the night.

But as always with Simon, that assertion was debatable. Carly Smithson did the power ballad thing and hit all the right notes with “I Drove All Night” by Celine Dion; Kristy Lee Cook came out of her shell with a stunningly beautiful country version of “Faithfully” by Journey and Brooke White turned Pat Benetar‘s “Love Is a Battlefield” into a another unique and engaging performance of a well-known song.

Tell us: Who was the best of the night?

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