It wasn't too long ago that Emily Ann Roberts stood on "The Voice" stage in Los Angeles. Now, she's excited to cheer on a fellow Knoxvilian as the competition gets tougher.

"He’s so passionate while he sings, he's such an artist, makes everything his," the Season 9 runner-up said of Chris Blue.

"Looks like he's having the time of his life - and that's what it’s all about."

More: Blue's sound mesmerizes audience

Blue and Roberts, runner-up to Jordan Smith in December 2015, met last year at a Hallerin Hill event at the Bijou Theater. There, Blue told Roberts of his desire to audition for "The Voice."

Roberts has been cheering Blue along throughout the NBC competition and understands the pressure that the live playoffs bring.

"It’s up to America and the audience to decided who stays and who goes, and that adds pressure to make sure you are translating well through the screen and connecting with the audience at home on their couch in their living room so that they will want to get on their phone and vote for you,” explained Roberts.

The first round of the live shows cuts the competition in half, sending home 12

"It's so fun, but also bittersweet. You become best friends and truly family with these contestants because you are spending every single day with them, and I remember the first live round was probably my saddest time because so many of my friends went home,” said Roberts.

Despite the new pressure, Roberts says the fast pace gives performing a new thrill.

"There’s so much more energy involved in the live rounds because it's instant. I hope Chris is just so excited and having so much fun.”

Blue sang Rihanna’s “Love on the Brain” and was voted Monday night by America to move forward to the next round.

The show is broadcast on WBIR, Channel 10.