PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Tight races. Bitter ad campaigns. Months of canvassing.

All that buzz seems to have helped drive voters to the polls.

Especially young people.

Garrett Archer, a senior analyst with the Arizona Secretary of State's Office estimates about 12.5 percent of voters were millennials.

"That's a fairly sizable increase from what we normally see in midterm elections, where it's closer to 8 percent," Archer said. "So 18- to 34-years-olds did absolutely come out in this election.”

He says the trends show these voters preferred mail-in ballots, and young people typically lean left.

But did the foretold "blue wave" really hit Arizona?

Archer says on Election Day, Republicans fought back at the polls, seeming to prefer in-person voting.

[IN A NUTSHELL: Takeaways from Arizona's midterm election]

“Several prior days before that, the Democrats had done an excellent job turning out their voters and mailing in ballots, and that gap had closed significantly,” said Archer. “The party gap in Maricopa county on Election Day had a 10 point advantage to the Republicans."

As of Wednesday night, there were still 615,000 early ballots needing to be counted statewide.

[RELATED: Arizona Republicans suing Secretary of State Michelle Reagan, all county recorders over early ballots]

[RELATED: County recorder explains why ballot counting takes so long in Maricopa County]

[AND THIS: 472,000 ballots left to be counted in Maricopa County]

“I wouldn't be surprised if that first Thursday at 5 p.m. drop was a little more favorable to some of the Democratic candidates,” Archer said.

That means those close races are not over yet.

[WATCH: Arizona races that are too close to call]

"No, not by a long shot,” said Archer.

Once all the early ballots are counted, Archer says it’s possible more people voted on Tuesday for a midterm election, than in the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections.

[INFOGRAHPIC: Arizona voters by the numbers]

[INFO YOU NEED: 7 things you need to know about Arizona's midterm election]

[CHECK: Live election results]

[GET: Arizona's Family news app]


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