It was practically a feeding frenzy at the regional high school this weekend when the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks defeated the Seacoast Mavericks in their season opener on Friday and again in a rain-soaked game on Saturday. Red Sox Hall of Famer Bob (The Steamer) Stanley threw out the first pitch on Friday night after a small ceremony honoring those who had been instrumental in welcoming the Sharks to the Island, including Vineyard schools superintendent Dr. James H. Weiss and high school principal Stephen Nixon,

The Sharks kept the Mavericks at bay for much of the game on Friday, only allowing one run at the top of the third inning. Both teams seemed to be finding their sea legs, as they squandered several scoring opportunities and left men on base. The score remained 1-0 until the bottom of the fifth, bases loaded with one out, when a drive to right confounded the Mavericks’ fielder and brought three men in. Another hit to center brought in the last man and made it 4-1. A hit to left field in the seventh added another run. The final run came at the bottom of the eighth, giving the Sharks the 6-1 lead that proved to be the final score.

The Sharks had practiced together just once before Friday’s opener. As the game wore on, they seemed to be getting more comfortable together, stealing bases and turning double plays. Zach Rafferty of Anna Maria College pitched five innings, allowing only the one run. Catchers on both teams faced several passed balls which allowed stolen bases.

But the Sharks appeared to recover from fielding mistakes better and faster than the Mavericks. After a fielder’s mistake allowed the run at the top of the third — the out came after the runner crossed home plate — the Sharks turned a double play to end that half of the inning.

According to the Sharks Web site, 2,139 fans were in attendance on Friday evening, including Bill Murray, who drew almost as many looks as Mr. Rafferty’s pitches. Many were sitting on the bleachers watching the game, but there were plenty of activities for those who simply wanted to revel in the atmosphere. A bounce house was available for youngsters and four concession stands served hot dogs, burgers, popcorn, chips and sausages for the hungry. And there were many hungry fans on Friday night; the line stretched back for most of the game only providing a break around the seventh inning when this reporter sampled a hot dog. An abundance of foul balls made for lots of running and scrambling by youngsters in attendance — even during Saturday’s rainy game. Entertainment between innings included a short Martha’s Vineyard trivia game for a Sharks player, a boy selected from the crowd to put on a frozen shirt in under 45 seconds and a woman selected from the crowd to guess the price of a basket of sale items at Stop and Shop.

The players, all taken from college teams, are staying with host families here on the Vineyard. Doris Clark, a wedding planner by day, organized their stays here. “If the community doesn’t open their hearts and homes to them [the players], there’s no way this can happen,” said Ms. Clark. She found host families by advertising in the paper, tweeting and putting notices up on Facebook. Host families all had to clear a criminal background check. Ms. Clark said families who are hosting the players often have children who love baseball, or they love baseball themselves. For each player they host, the family receives a stipend of $600. Households host one, two or four players. And plenty of host families were found; only four players are living outside the family, so to speak, in an apartment in Vineyard Haven.

On Thursday night last week as they enjoyed dinner at Zephrus in Vineyard Haven, the players sounded excited to be spending the summer playing baseball on the Vineyard. “I’ve never played in front of a thousand people before,” said Christopher Hubbard, a pitcher from Brown University. Mr. Hubbard, who is from southern California, said he’d “never seen anything like it,” when asked how he was enjoying his time on the Vineyard. “I was surprised how much team chemistry we had right off the bat,” said Jack Colton, an outfielder from Harvard University. The schedule has them playing the same three teams, the Seacoast Mavericks, Torrington Titans and Nashua Silver Knights.

Saturday brought another win for the Sharks; they defeated the Mavericks 6-3. The crowd was much thinner, no doubt driven away by the weather which had turned rainy and windy. Kyle Snyder, a relief pitcher for the 2007 World Series Champion Boston Red Sox, threw out the first pitch. The pitcher, Jay Swinford of the University of Georgia, threw several low pitches early in the game, but quickly found his height and threw six straight innings without a hit. At the bottom of the second, a hit to right dropped in and sent the man on second home to make the score 1-0. The Mavericks loaded the bases at the top of the sixth, but squandered the opportunity with a line drive to left field that was caught. The Sharks went on to load the bases in their half of the inning and brought two men in before Ronnie Rosario, a catcher from Weatherford College, hit a three-run homer to left field. It was the Shark’s first home run of the season; the score was 6-0. Kyle Contino of Queens College took over the pitching in the seventh inning. The top of the eighth brought some trouble for the Sharks and they almost let the game slip from their grasp. A fly to center brought in the man on first when the center fielder, Tad Gold, the team’s only Island native, slipped on the wet grass. A low fly to center brought in the second man, making the score 6-2. The final Mavericks run came off another fly to center right. With men on first and second a deep fly to center was caught to end the inning. The game was called due to rain before the Sharks took the field.

The Sharks took their show on the road on Sunday and handed an 8-6 defeat to the Nashua Silver Knights. They take the field again tonight against the Torrington Titans. Game time is 5 p.m. at the regional high school field.

Can they remain undefeated?