Edinburgh City ended our slim play-off hopes as they signed off at Meadowbank on a high.
The 2015/16 Lowland League champions will be groundsharing with Spartans at Ainslie Park for the next three years as their own stadium is being redeveloped.
There were just 30 seconds left of a dire 90 minutes when Derek Riordan made space some 20 yards out and fired a low drive beyond Chris Smith and into the far corner.
It was a quality finish from the former Scotland striker, in a game that looked destined for a goalless draw long before the end, and earned Gary Jardine’s men a third straight victory and clean sheet.
We hadn’t lost on our travels since the end of January and a win would have kept our top-four ambitions alive going into the Forthbank meeting with new leaders Arbroath on the final day but another season in Ladbrokes League 2 now beckons.
Binos boss Dave Mackay named the same team that drew 2-2 at Elgin the previous week, with Callum MacDonald stepping up from the U20s to be named on the bench for the first time.
Ross Smith, Frazer Wright, Sean Dickson, Willie Robertson, Jack McCue and Andy Little were all sidelined for the trip to the capital, where a 2-0 defeat in December saw us drop to the foot of the table.
There was a real end-of-season feel to the first half, with hardly a chance created and both teams struggling to deal with a fiery pitch. The only opportunity of note came after 21 minutes but Ryan Porteous headed just over from a Josh Walker cross.
It was a similar story in the second half, with both keepers barely troubled, although City enjoyed a bit more of the ball.
Stirling lacked urgency but almost took the lead in 83 minutes when Calum Antell did well to push substitute Ross Kavanagh’s header on to the post and behind for a corner.
A dreary draw was looming until Riordan’s sweet strike gave City victory and moved them to within three points of the Binos going into their last game at Berwick.
Edinburgh City: Antell, Dunsmore, Porteous, Harrison, McFarland (Cummings 34), Walker, Guthrie (Donaldson 80), Gair, Riordan, Beattie (McConnell 29), Mbu.
Subs (not used): Caddow, Makofo, Laird, Stobie (GK).
Scorer: Riordan 90
Stirling Albion: C Smith, McGeachie, Quigley, Black, Caddis, McMillan, Morrison (Kavanagh 60), Colquhoun, D Smith (Henderson 60) McLaren, Bikey (McMullan 72).
Subs (not used): Forsyth, Mills, MacDonald, Binnie (GK).
Referee: Gavin Ross