The Martha’s Vineyard Sharks and the Worcester Bravehearts of the Futures Collegiate Baseball League (FCBL) will decide the league championship at the Shark Tank in Oak Bluffs at 6 pm Monday.
The Sharks avoided elimination and forced a third and final playoff game with a 4-2 win over the Bravehearts in Worcester on Sunday. The Sharks were rebounding from a 10-6 loss to Worcester in the best-of-three series opener on Friday night at the Tank. The Sharks beat the Brockton Rox last week in a comeback performance to reach the championship round.
Jackson Raper doubled in a run on Sunday, and Nick Raposo singled in a pair, for a first-inning 3-0 Shaks lead. Brett Coffie homered to put Worcester on the board in the second. The Sharks padded the lead to 4-1 in the third on a Tate Kolwyck single, and the Bravehearts closed it to 4-2 in the seventh, as close as they would get.
The Sharks pitching staff, roughly handled by Worcester on Friday night, got strong performances by Bryan Ketchie (two innings, one run) and Devon DiMascio (five innings, one run) before Mike Mikulski finished it with two scoreless frames.
Worcester is an experienced playoff team, reaching the finals for five years in a row. The Sharks have reached the finals once, winning the championship in 2013.