A stunning double from Kieran McAnespie earned Albion their first away league win of the season on Saturday as Elgin’s slump continued.
The former Arbroath ace’s goal in the recent 2-0 victory over Clyde was his first of the campaign and he had promised more.
But no-one expected this – two wonderful strikes that extended Stirling’s unbeaten run to seven matches in the space of 22 days.
Incredibly, Greig McDonald’s team have picked up more points during that sequence than in the rest of 2012/13 and headed for Berwick last night (Tuesday) six points short of the play-offs and in seventh spot in a congested Third Division table.
McAnespie broke the deadlock in seven minutes when he sent a swerving 25-yarder past keeper Joe Malin and into the top corner.
It was a fabulous goal and his second was even better.
Nine minutes before half-time, the City defence only partially cleared a corner and McAnespie connected perfectly, thundering a brilliantly-controlled volley high into the net.
Elgin had equalised when Stuart Leslie was unmarked at the back post to score with a header from Brian Cameron’s cross but Albion were worthy winners.
Top scorer Jordan White was unlucky not to add to his 10-goal tally, skimming the crossbar with a first-half header and coming close on a couple of occasions after the break, while Mark Ferry had a net-bound shot blocked just before Elgin’s equaliser.
Albion keeper Sam Filler, recalled in place of the injured David Crawford, made an important early save from Leslie and was grateful to see a late header drop over the bar.
But he was well protected by a defence who haven’t conceded more than a single goal in any of the past seven matches. Ross Jack’s team had beaten the Binos 3-1 and 4-1 this term but have now won just twice in 15 outings since that triumph at Forthbank in November.
They had several of their key players back for this one but still fell to a fourth straight defeat.
Elgin’s second-half approach was fairly direct, particularly after the introduction of giant striker Paul Millar, but Stirling were strong and any fears that their exertions in drawing with Rangers on Tuesday would have a negative effect were unfounded.
McAnespie’s two-goal intervention ultimately proved decisive but the whole team put in a phenomenal shift and the celebrations with supporters at the end was one of the highlights of the campaign so far. It’s been a long wait – Stirling’s last away success was at Albion Rovers in May 2012 – but this was a performance of which they could be very proud.