Incumbents kept in Northern S.J. Valley

With one exception, incumbents held sway Tuesday in Merced and San Joaquin counties.

Merced County Sheriff Mark Pazin and District Attorney Larry Morse II faced no opposition and each received more than 97 percent of the vote.

In San Joaquin County, Sheriff Steve Moore easily won a second term against challenger Robert Mor-eno, a retired sheriff's lieutenant.

Moore received 46,941 votes, or 72.4 percent, to Moreno's 17,737 votes, or 27.4 percent, according the San Joaquin County registrar of voters.

The big upset of the night was political newcomer Linn Davis' victory over Merced County Supervisor Mike Nelson. Davis received 3,320 votes, or 56.7 percent, to Nelson's 2,515 votes, or 43 percent, denying Nelson a third term on the Board of Supervisors.

Merced County Supervisor Jerry O'Banion faced no opposition in winning another term and received nearly 98 percent of the vote.

In the race for Superintendent of the Merced County Office of Education, Steve Gomes defeated Susan Coston. Gomes received 10,757 votes, or 54.1 percent, to Coston's 9,033 votes, or 45.5 percent.

Gomes is superintendent of the Planada School District, and Coston is an assistant superintendent for the county office of education.

In Tuolumne County, challenger Randy Hanvelt beat incumbent Paolo Maffei for a seat on the Board of Supervisors. Hanvelt got 1,706 votes, or 64.3 percent, to Maffei's 940 votes, or 35.4 percent.

In the race to replace outgoing Supervisor Teri Murrison, Evan Royce had 1,164 votes, or 51.5 percent. Two other candidates had 1,091 votes, or 48.3 percent, between them. But there are still ballots to be counted. Royce will avoid a runoff if he ends up with at least 50 percent of the vote.

Sheriff Jim Mele defeated challenger Tom Memmer, with 7,217 votes, or 55.7 percent, to Memmer's 5,709 votes, or 44.1 percent.

The Merced Sun-Star contributed to this report.