Stirling Albion can look forward to a meeting with Scottish Cup holders Inverness Caley Thistle at Forthbank on the weekend of January 9 after a convincing win over Cumbernauld Colts on Tuesday night.
Steven Doris and substitute Craig Beattie both scored twice, with Sean Dickson and on-loan St Johnstone striker Kyle Lander also on target.
Doris missed an early penalty as we dominated the match against our Lowland League opponents, who had knocked out Auchinleck Talbot in the previous round.
The third-round game went ahead at the second time of asking after Saturday’s postponement due to a waterlogged pitch and the surface was in immaculate condition despite more heavy rain in recent days.
It was dry and mild by kick-off and Stuart McLaren’s men looked in the mood right from the start against a Cumbernauld team who were nine matches unbeaten and included ex-Binos Blair Munn and Richie Kirwan in their ranks.
There were less than four minutes gone when good work by the excellent Mark Lamont set up Doris, who was tripped in the box by Robbie Duncan. Our top scorer took the penalty himself but crashed the ball against the bar.
Doris came close with a header before breaking the deadlock from close range in 15 minutes after the Cumbernauld defence failed to deal with a Lamont corner.
The ex-St Mirren winger was again the provider for the second goal midway through the first half when his cross from the right was headed home by Dickson.
A slack spell towards half-time saw Colts briefly threaten but we put the tie beyond doubt early in the second period when Doris netted from close range after the ball had been hooked back into the box following a corner.
Teenage keeper Ross Doohan made some good saves on the night but had no chance when Beattie marked his first appearance since August 22 – having been sidelined with a hamstring injury – by finding the bottom corner from the edge of the box.
Lander claimed his first senior goal with seven minutes left, following up after Lamont had been denied, and 17-year-old Doohan then thwarted David Verlaque and Lander as we piled on the pressure.
Beattie slammed in the sixth with the last kick of the ball after a good run by Ross Forsyth to seal our biggest win since we thrashed East Stirling 9-1 in March 2013.
Stirling Albion: C Smith, Verlaque, McKinlay, Mazel (Comrie 60), McGeachie, Forsyth, Lamont, Robertson, Doris (Beattie 69), D Smith (Lander 75), Dickson.
Subs (not used): Hamilton, R Smith, Cunningham, Binnie (GK).
Scorers: Doris 15, 49, Dickson 22, Beattie 73, 90, Lander 83
Cumbernauld Colts: Doohan, Duncan, Kirwan, Oliver, Ward, Barclay, Ballantyne (Brown 72), Munn (Black 52), Selkirk, Broadfoot (Tilley 56), O’Neill.
Subs (not used): Foggin, Benton, Grant, George (GK).
Referee: Don Robertson