Secretary of State Mark Hammond staved off three challengers in Tuesday's GOP primary, while Attorney General Alan Wilson likely will have to face off again in a June 26 runoff, according to unofficial results.

Hammond handily prevailed, winning more than 68 percent of the vote, with 90 percent of the state's precincts reporting.

His challengers included Nelson Faerber, a former Clemson football player who earned a law degree and served in Afghanistan, state Rep. Joshua Putnam of Anderson, and Kerry Wood, CEO of Dark Horse Strategy Group, LLC, of Greenville.

None had topped the 15 percent mark.

Meanwhile, Wilson faces a closer call, as the most recent results Wednesday morning still showed him with slightly less than 50 percent of the early vote in his three-way battle against state Rep. Todd Atwater of Lexington and Greenville lawyer William Herlong. However, 10 percent of the vote was still outstanding, according

If Wilson doesn't get more than 50 percent, he seems certain to face off against Atwater, who had 30 percent of the vote compared to Herlong's 20 percent.

The Attorney General's GOP primary was among the state's hardest fought races, with negative TV ads across the state and criticism of Wilson's ties to figures in an ongoing Statehouse corruption probe.

As voting was continuing Tuesday, Wilson's office announced that a three-month-long national task force had arrested 48 suspected child sex offenders in South Carolina.

Wilson's spokesman Robert Kittle said the announcement's timing was a coincidence to the primary.

Kittle noted the U.S. Department of Justice put out its news release Tuesday, and Wilson's office was asked how many South Carolina arrests there were.

Whoever ends up winning the GOP Attorney General's primary race will face Democratic challenger Constance Anastopoulo, a professor at the Charleston School of Law and a former litigator, on Nov. 6.

Hammond will face Democrat and retired Army Major Melvin Whittenburg in the November general election.

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Reach Robert Behre at 843-937-5771. Follow him on Twitter @RobertFBehre.