Hagedorn led fellow Appeals Judge Lisa Neubauer 50.2% to 49.8% with nearly all of Tuesday’s votes unofficially counted — at a margin that allows a recount.

A win by Hagedorn would defy the predictions of prominent groups that typically back conservative judicial candidates but counted him out and wouldn’t spend on his behalf during the race…

The winner will replace liberal Justice Shirley Abrahamson, who disclosed last year she had cancer and was not seeking re-election.

Conservatives now control the court 4-3. That would expand to 5-2 if Hagedorn is declared the winner and remain at 4-3 if Neubauer manages to overcome her deficit when the vote count is finalized.