Stephen Day’s header after just 93 seconds was enough to give us only our second away league win of the season on the plastic pitch at a sunny but windy Galabank this afternoon.
The victory lifts us above Annan and into seventh place and means we have lost just twice in 15 matches since the beginning of February.
It was a 90 minutes spoiled by a strong wind blowing straight down the pitch and chances were few at either end but our goal came against the elements.
Kieran McAnespie floated a free-kick into the box and the ball sat up nicely for Day to loop a header up and over Alex Mitchell for his fourth goal of the season.
Day, who scored a hat-trick in a recent U19 fixture, was one of five changes to the team that lost 1-0 at home to Peterhead last weekend as we sought revenge for a 5-2 defeat here in November.
Goalkeeper David Crawford, defenders Danny Ashe and Jamie Clark and wingers Josh Flood and Day were all recalled as Sam Filler, Phil Johnston and Graham Weir dropped to the bench. Jamie Bishop (work commitments) and David McClune (suspended) also missed out for the 100-mile trip south. Defender Jack Stickler from the U19 team was named among the subs.
Mark Ferry missed a great chance to double our lead in 20 minutes when he dragged his shot wide after being put clear while top scorer Jordan White was unlucky to see a terrific 25-yard free-kick strike the bar early in the second period.
Annan had won their last two matches but we restricted them to very few openings. Crawford made a vital block from Jordan McKechnie, who looked set to score midway through the first half, but with the wind at our backs after the interval, Stirling rarely looked like conceding as we followed up recent away draws at Ibrox, Hampden and Montrose with an important win.
Conditions were difficult for both teams and it was a contest that was rarely easy on the eye but the Binos produced a battling performance as we notched up our third clean sheet in six matches and end Annan’s recent revival.
The only negative was a knee injury picked up by Scott Davidson that saw the striker limp off to be replaced by Weir after an hour.
Annan Athletic: Mitchell, Chisholm, McGowan, McNiff, Watson, Sloan (Monaghan 60), Jardine, Chaplain, Daly, Hopkirk (Donley 85), McKechnie (Love 60).
Subs (not used): Swinglehurst, Summersgill (GK).
Stirling Albion: Crawford, McCunnie, Ashe, McAnespie, Thom, Clark, Flood (Johnston 79), Ferry, White (Cunningham 90), Davidson (Weir 61), Day.
Subs (not used): Stickler, Filler (GK).
Scorer: Day 2
Referee: Colin Steven