Football Club

Stirling Albion 1 Elgin City 4

Craig Gunn bagged a first-half hat-trick as high-flying Elgin cruised to victory on their first league visit to Forthbank since 2003/04.

Stuart Leslie was also on target for Ross Jack’s side and Graham Weir’s deflected effort late in the first half was little consolation as we remain rooted to the foot of Division Three.

In a nightmare first half, we also lost full-backs David McClune and Ross McGeachie to injury and substitute Jamie Clark had to be replaced in the second period.

Gary Thom, Greig McDonald and Sam Filler were all suspended and Kieran McAnespie and Danny Ashe missed out through injury while illness sidelined Daly McSorley.

With McDonald serving a one-match touchline ban and assistant Marc McCulloch on the pitch, U19 coaches Graeme Donald and David Binnie were in the dug-out.

Elgin had scored at least twice in their last seven games and they were in front after only six minutes. Brian Cameron picked out Gunn with a terrific pass and he ran clear to slot the ball past Mark Peat.

Gunn added the second in 27 minutes when we failed to clear our lines and he completed his treble with a simple finish at the back post after a Cameron assist.

Strike partner Leslie bagged the fourth when he finished off a superb move and, although Weir reduced the deficit, it was little comfort as we suffered a third straight home defeat – following the losses to Montrose and Deveronvale.

Jordan White missed a great chance at the start of the second half but Elgin saw the game out comfortably to claim their first away win since beating East Stirlingshire at the end of August.

The former Highland League club can now look forward to a top-of-the-table clash with Rangers on Sunday. In contrast, we head for Hampden to play Queen’s Park on Friday night, three points behind second-bottom Clyde.

Stirling Albion: Peat, McClune (Clark 15) (S Weir 72), McGeachie (Davidson 36), McCulloch, McCunnie, Allison, Day, G Weir, Flood, White, Ferry. Subs (not used): Brass, Cleland (GK).

Scorer: G Weir 38

Elgin City: Gibson, Beveridge, McMullan, Crighton, Duff, Cameron, Gunn (Wyness 69), O’Donoghue (MacLean 72), Leslie, Niven, Moore (Harkins 63). Subs (not used): McHardy, Black (GK).

Scorers: Gunn 6, 27, 30, Leslie 35

Referee: Don Robertson

Crowd: 454