In this Dec. 29, 2021, file photo, snow covers the park in front of the State House in Augusta. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

A Republican primary in a sprawling Maine House district stretching across Franklin, Somerset and Oxford counties was decided by just five votes after a Friday recount.

Marine veteran Michael Soboleski of Phillips won the nomination in the June 14 election for the seat with 418 votes to 413 for Nancy Bessey, the owner of Moose Alley, a bowling alley, bar and restaurant in her hometown of Rangeley.

Soboleski lost one vote in the recount compared with the initial count, according to Secretary of State Shenna Bellows’ office. He now becomes the heavy favorite in the deeply conservative area against Democrat Vincent House of Sandy River Plantation in the November election in a district stretching from Gilead in the south to Jackman in the north.

The district was created in last year’s redistricting process, largely combining portions of districts now held by Rep. Tom Skolfield of Weld and Rep. Frances Head of Bethel. Both were first elected in 2014 but are unable to run this year because of term limits.

Michael Shepherd joined the Bangor Daily News in 2015 after three years as a reporter at the Kennebec Journal. A Hallowell native who now lives in Augusta, he graduated from the University of Maine in...