Peterhead sealed a 4-0 aggregate success with a comfortable win in the second leg of the League 1 play-off semi-final at Balmoor.
We were promoted via the play-offs in 2006/07 and 2013/14 but won’t have the chance to make it a hat-trick and the Blue Toon now take on Stenhousemuir in the final.
Binos boss Dave Mackay had to do without skipper Willie Robertson, who was at the birth of his daughter, while defender Lee Hamilton and midfielder Kevin Moon were injured. Andy Black, George Stanger and top scorer Darren Smith came into the side, with Neil McLaughlin dropping to the bench.
There was a strong wind blowing down the pitch and Albion had the advantage in the first half as we sought to overturn the 1-0 deficit from Wednesday’s game at Forthbank.
Stirling made a strong start and had a couple of half chances but Peterhead came into the game and created two clear opportunities. Cammy Binnie did well to deny Rory McAllister then made an outstanding stop to divert a Scott Brown shot over the bar.
The opener came in 38 minutes when Willie Gibson’s corner was met by Mason Robertson and the defender sent a powerful header in off the crossbar.
Ross Kavanagh should have equalised before half-time after keeper Greg Fleming had struck an Albion player with a clearance but the forward sent his shot over the bar.
Peter MacDonald missed a great chance early in the second half, dragging his shot wide after great work by Ross McGeachie, and the game was soon over.
Rory McAllister thumped a low drive beyond Binnie and Jason Brown converted a cross from fellow defender Aidan McIlduff before the midway point of the second half as our season ended in defeat and a nine-game winless run.
Peterhead: Fleming, Jason Brown, Robertson, McIlduff, Stevenson, Ferry, S Brown, McLean (Jordon Brown 66), Leitch (Smith 59), Gibson, McAllister (Belmokhtar 72).
Subs (not used): Hobday (GK), Norris, Johnston, Adams.
Goals: Robertson 38, McAllister 57, Jason Brown 65
Stirling Albion: Binnie, McGeachie, McNeil (McLaughlin 61), Stanger, Barr, Black (Dickson 68), Caddis, Jardine, MacDonald, D Smith (Noble 79), Kavanagh.
Subs (not used): Wight (GK), R Smith, Banner.
Referee: Barry Cook