PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Voters casting ballots at Tuesday's preliminary election chose mayoral candidates Linda Tyer and Melissa Mazzeo to face off for the general election in November.
They also thinned out the herd in two ward races to place the names of Jonathan Lothrop and Patrick Kavey on the ballot for Ward 5 and candidates Joseph Nichols and Dina Guiel Lampiasi for Ward 6.
On the mayoral front, Councilor at Large Melissa Mazzeo received the most votes out of the four candidates on the ballot with an unofficial count of 2,860 votes. Incumbent Mayor Linda Tyer received 2,571 votes.
The two mayor candidates were favorites in the race, and performed well above Rusty Anchor owner Scott Graves and retired Pittsfield Police Officer Karen Kalinowsky. Graves took 343 votes while Kalinowsky took 281 votes.
Overall turnout was only 22 percent, with 6,078 total voters out of 27,893 casting ballots. Ward 5 also saw about a 22 percent turnout and Ward 6 slightly higher at 24 percent.
Graves said before polls closed that he did not anticipate a windfall victory but was thankful for the support.
"I am glad I did it ... and this support means a lot to me," he said. "I have seen a lot of people I have known through my 30 years in business."
Before polls closed, Kalinowsky said it had been a tiring day and that she was not dwelling on the anticipated results, but on her supporters.
"I am trying to not even think about it but I do have some support," she said.
In Ward 5, political newcomer Kavey took the most votes with 409 casting their ballot in his name.
"I am pretty confident and I feel good," he said earlier in the day outside the Ward 5 polling location at the Berkshire Athenaeum. "I love the support the ward has given me."
Lothrop, who stepped down from the council in 2015, was the second-highest vote-getter and received 356 votes
The third candidate, Eugene Maselli, took 103 votes and will be eliminated from the November ballot.
The winner of the November race will take a seat to be vacated by Donna Todd Rivers who decided not to run for a third term.
In Ward 6, Guiel Lampiasi took the most votes in her ward at 533; Nichols, a former councilor, took 315 votes.
Also-rans were Edward Carmel with 93 votes and Craig Gaetani with 54 votes. Their names will not be on the ballot in November.
Carmel, who serves on the city's Homeless Prevention Committee, had been upbeat earlier in the day.
"I am feeling good," he said. "I am confident I can win."