The Keene Swamp Bats came, saw, conquered and left victorious with a 14-10 win over the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks in game one of the NECBL championship Wednesday night.

Now the Sharks face a win-or-go-home situation away in New Hampshire today. If they win, they come home to the Shark Tank for all the marbles on Friday.

On Wednesday night the visitors from Keene jumped all over Sharks starting pitcher Oliver McCarthy early, chasing the lefty in just the second inning after rattling him for four earned runs on five hits.

Angelo Tones entered in relief for the Sharks and promptly silenced the threatening Swamp Bats to escape the second inning with no further damage.

Tones kept the red hot Keene bats at bay for four solid innings, striking out eight and keeping the Sharks within grasp of a comeback.

In the fourth, the Vineyard found their rhythm. Nander De Sedas reached on a single then Michael Knell connected for a drive to left that cleared the fence and brought the Sharks to within two.

Following Knell’s four-bagger, Josh Spiegel reached base with a single, then Collin Shapiro walked and the two Sharks baserunners advanced on a wild pitch to get into scoring position.

Matt Chamberlain hit a grounder to the Swamp Bat shortstop, who misfired to first, scoring Spiegel and Shapiro, evening the score at 4-4.

But the wheels came off for the Sharks in the seventh, as three of their relievers gave up seven runs by way of a homer, six hits, three walks and a passed ball, digging the Vineyard into an 11-4 hole with only nine outs left.

But if there’s one thing the Sharks have been doing all season, it’s battling back from being down. And true to form, they did precisely that.

De Sedas gave the remaining Sharks faithful something to cheer for in the bottom half of the seventh when he hit a towering homer to right that pierced the fog looming over the outfield and landed on the high school lacrosse practice field.

In the eighth, Keene tacked on another run in the top half of the inning, but the Sharks never gave up hope. With Nick Raposo on first, Alan Burnsed tore into a 3-1 fastball sending it up and into orbit through the trees beyond the fence in left.

Immediately after, De Sedas wasted no time crushing the first pitch of his at bat to almost-right where his first dinger landed for his second long-bomb in as many innings.

Three straight walks followed, putting Knell, Spiegel, and Shapiro on base for Chamberlain. After a wild pitch scored Knell, Chamberlain poked a single through the infield and into left, scoring Spiegel and pulling the Sharks to within two runs of tying the game.

But the comeback fell short. After giving up a two-run blast in the ninth, putting the Vineyard behind by four, Burnsed reached base on an error but the rally came to a halt at that.

After the game manager Jay Mendez spoke closely and quietly with his team in front of the dugout. Despite dropping game one, the squad broke the huddle not looking dejected but ready to take on the challenge of winning the next two games in a row.