A high school cheerleader on her way to a Christmas party was killed when her car hit a tree near Coto de Caza, officials said Thursday.
Rianna Elizabeth Woolsey, 16, a student at Tesoro High School near Mission Viejo, died at Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo about 6 p.m. Wednesday after losing control of her Volkswagen Jetta on Coto de Caza Drive near the main gate of the South County community.
Grief counselors were at the campus Thursday to help students deal with what Capistrano Valley Unified Supt. James A. Fleming called "a terrible tragedy."
"She was an all-American girl -- the kind of daughter any parent would be proud to have."
The accident occurred on the eve of a CIF division championship football game that Woolsey would have attended. Her death came just weeks after the school was rocked by the scandal of two players being suspended for allegedly writing threats against a teacher in their journals.
"This is a tough time," Fleming said. "All of this occurring before the holidays ... it's very difficult for everyone."
He said a tribute to Woolsey was being planned for tonight's game -- a Division IX matchup between Tesoro and Irvine's Northwood High School at Orange Coast College. "As a cheerleader she would have been right there on the sidelines cheering the team on," Fleming said.
As for the two suspended football players, he said, they are still out of school pending the outcome of an upcoming expulsion hearing.
California Highway Patrol officials said Thursday the accident was under investigation.
The grief counselors, Fleming said, will be back on campus today.