The Martha’s Vineyard Sharks and the Worcester Bravehearts are 2018 Futures League Collegiate Baseball co-champions.

Leadoff hitter Matt Chamberlain cracked a home run in the bottom of the first. After that it was only more rain. — Ray Ewing

Tied 1-1 in the best-of-three series, the Sharks faced the Worcester team Monday at home for the deciding game.

But at the end of the first inning with the score tied 1-1, heavy downpours forced FCBL commissioner Christopher Hall to make a tough call.

“We did the best we could with the weather we had,” Mr. Hall said, “but for the first time in our league’s eight-year history, we have co-champions: I’d like to congratulate the Worcester Bravehearts and the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks on great seasons and the shared 2018 FCBL championship!”

On the mound for the Sharks was FCBL best pitching prospect award-winner Chance Huff, who will start at Vanderbilt in the fall. With a rowdy, heckling contingent of Worcester fans on the visitors’ side of the field, Huff yielded one run on a walk and two singles in the top of the inning. After the early base runners, he settled down with his mid-nineties fastball and got out of the inning with a strikeout of Tyler Becker from Adelphi.

The Sharks immediately responded. With the rain coming sideways, leadoff hitter and emotional core of the team Matt Chamberlain cracked a 3-1 pitch from Bravehearts starter Jared Freilich over the right field fence. Many in the exuberant crowd speculated as to the whereabouts of the ball as it sailed into the hazy sky as dusk fell. And with a leadoff home run, the game and the series were both tied.

It would stay that way for another rain-soaked hour and a half, as Sharks players covered, removed, covered, removed and covered the quickly-puddling field. Finally, the commissioner made the decision to award both teams the 2018 title.

No one seemed to mind and both teams were all smiles taking photos with the ornate FCBL trophy.

“After such a great season, that’s how it had to end!” exclaimed 13-year-old Sharks super-fan AJ O’Mara. “I mean, those 15 minutes of baseball they played were the most exhilarating fifteen minutes of baseball I’ve seen.”

Stalwart summer fans at the shark tank on the high school field. — Ray Ewing

AJ said he has been to every Sharks home game this season.

“No! You missed one,” corrected friend and fellow Sharks camper Ian Jims.

“It was my parents’ anniversary,” AJ retorted.

AJ stayed through the deluge and then worked his way onto the field to knuckle bump every Sharks player he could find, addressing them all by name.

The Sharks gave their fair share of knuckles too. Six-year-old Chad Cohen was one recipient.

“He’s the unofficial team mascot,” said Chad’s father Adam. “He’s done the dizzy-bat game between half-innings probably 10 times.”

Tyler Wincig told Chad to keep playing, and Matt Chamberlain followed suit. It was clear the Sharks hadn’t just made their presence felt on the Vineyard; the Vineyard had made its imprint on the Sharks too.

Russ Curran, the Sharks’ do-everything general manager, went around and thanked each player after the game. He had some choice words for Chance Huff.

“You gave up a run,” he said. “We should have won one-nothing.” The two embraced in a hug, knowing well it may be their last.

For some players, the final hug proved too much.

“So am I coming back next summer?” Collin Shapiro asked Mr. Curran as he came by.

“You bet,” Mr. Curran said. “Now go rescue the flag. Go get the trophy so we can take pictures!”

Nobody likes saying goodbye.

“Oh, it’s the hardest part,” Mr. Curran agreed. “But at least they are leaving on a good note.”

In a normal baseball season only one team gets to end the season as a winner. This year, two did.

“It’s been a special year,” Mr. Curran said.