Cambridge Convention '77 supporters breathed easier yesterday when unofficial counts for number one votes in the Cambridge School Committee race showed the liberal group's slate will almost assuredly hold their three seats.
In the fight for the committees six positions, School Committee member Alice K. Wolf, endorsed by the convention, topped all candidates with 3621 number one votes.
School Committee member Glenn S. Koocher '71, a convention endorsee, is in fifth place in the continuing ballot count with 2638 number ones, immediately followed by the convention-endorsed Charles R. Pierce, a former incumbent, and convention-endorsed School Committee member Sara Mae Berman.
Wolf has already passed the quota of votes needed for election, approximately 3283. She said yesterday she expects her surplus of number one votes, when transferred, will strengthen the other slate members.
Koocher said yesterday he is confident of victory since his number one vote total is sufficient to hold off his elimination until another slate endorsee is eliminated. This would free more than 2000 slate votes, enough of which will transfer to him to put his total above the quota, he added.
Assuming Koocher's analysis is correct, most observers said yesterday either Berman or Pierce, but not both, will win a seat from the transfer votes of the eliminated slate endorsee.
Independent challenger David Holway finished a strong third in the first round count, with 2967 number one votes, and several other candidates and campaign workers said yesterday they expect him to win.
Wolf and Koocher said yesterday they expect Holway will displace the school committee's longest serving incumbent, septugenarian James F. Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald is in eighth place with 2002 votes.
They said Daivd P. Kennedy's 1085 votes will probably feed into Fitzgerald's total somewhat since both independents live in East Cambridge from which Kennedy drew most of his votes.
Fitzgerald's problem, they said, is that he will not get the more than 820 votes he needs to overtake independent School Committee member Joseph Maynard, who is in fourth place.
Independent School Committee member Donald Fantini finished in second place with 3232 number one votes and should win re-election.
The election commission changed procedures slightly yesterday by counting school committee ballots immediately after tallying City Council votes on Wednesday.
This has slowed the counting somewhat. George I. Goverman '65, an election commissioner, said yesterday, "We're running a little behind schedule.