Two early goals sent Elgin on their way to a comfortable win at Borough Briggs in Group C of the Betfred Cup.
Shane Sutherland and Kane Hester had Gavin Price’s team in control after just 13 minutes and Sutherland added a late third for the hosts.
It was a disappointing afternoon for Kevin Rutkiewicz’s side, who held Hibs to a draw last weekend before losing 6-1 to Arbroath in midweek. Elgin lost their Group C opener 2-1 at Gayfield then beat Alloa on penalties after a 3-3 draw – they face Hibs here on Friday while we go to Alloa on Tuesday.
Binos boss Rutkiewicz had always planned to make full use of his squad in this competition and there were eight changes from the Arbroath game. Kevin Nicoll and James Creaney were still sidelined and Ross McGeachie also missed out so Jordan McGregor skippered the side.
Elgin were in front after seven minutes. Poor defending allowed Hester to set up Sutherland and the summer signing from Peterhead knocked the ball past Blair Currie.
Former Arbroath striker Hester grabbed a sensational second with a 30 yarder that flew into the top corner and it was always going to be a long way back from that.
Gareth Rodger, making his debut, and Sean Heaver had decent chances as we tried to hit back but we failed to work keeper Thomas McHale often enough.
Not too much happened in the second half – we saw a fair bit of the ball but Conor O’Keefe and Sutherland missed good opportunities for City before the latter made space in the box and found the bottom corner with a tidy finish 10 minutes from time.
Elgin City: McHale, Wilson, Spark, McDonald (McGowan 85) Bronsky, Dingwall, Cooper, MacEwan, Hester (Loveland 82), Sutherland, O’Keefe (Willis 74). Subs (not used): Scott, Ballam, Thomson, Dunn (GK).
Goals: Shane Sutherland 7, 80, Hester 13
Stirling Albion: Currie, McLean, Lowdon, McGregor, Rodger, Wright, Docherty, Wilson (Jardine 50), Peters (Hawke 56), Heaver (Mackin 65), Willis. Subs (not used): Truesdale, Banner, Murray, Binnie (GK).
Referee: Scott Lambie