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Scorers: Stranraer - Okoh (36 and 61) and Beith (75); Airdrieonians - Carrick (2) and Furtado (64)

STRANRAER recovered from a dreadful start to pick up three valuable points, with Angus Beith again on target.

The Blues ended a five-game winless streak in a thoroughly entertaining affair which gave both sets of fans value for money.

Stevie Farrell made one change, with Paul Woods recalled in place of the injured Cameron Elliott.

Recent loan signings Ross Lyon and Dylan Dykes were named on the bench, alongside Scott Agnew, who was fit again after injury.

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Still, it was Airdrie's new signings who caught the early attention.

Just 78 seconds were on the clock when Darryl Duffy and Dale Carrick combined for the opening goal.

Carrick, who left Livingston this week, collected Duffy's flick on and had acres of room to power towards the box and slam the ball past Cameron Belford.

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It was an impressive start for the visitors, who really should have extended their lead just moments later.

This time, Duffy capitalised on Belford's wayward clearance before unleashing a stinging drive which the goalkeeper did well to keep out.

The rebound fell to Willis Furtado, who blasted beyond Belford only to see it crack off the underside off the bar.

Furtado then reacted quickest to get to his own rebound but could only head the ball to the goalkeeper.

Jake Hastie then tested Belford with a shot across goal, with Duffy inches away from getting on the end of the rebound.

It was a breathless opening 15 minutes, with Sean McIntosh calling Belford into action before Stranraer found an unexpected leveller.

David Brownlie's back pass was wayward but goalkeeper Rohan Ferguson still had plenty of time to clear the ball.

However, his heavy first touch allowed the onrushing Stephen Okoh to close him down.

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Okoh then managed to block the goalkeeper's attempted clearance and celebrated as the ball trickled over the goal line.

Stranraer knew they would have to improve after the break and Beith forced Ferguson into a decent save nine minutes after the restart.

Still, Airdrie were looking threatening going forward and Hastie drilled a shot against Belford's chest before Duffy was denied from close range by a combination of goalkeeper and post.

Immediately, Stranraer made their guests pay for those missed chances.

Paul Woods put in the yards, collecting the ball near his own box and powering up field before finding Beith.

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The on-loan midfielder's through ball to Okoh on the edge of the box was perfect and the striker smartly finished to put the hosts in front.

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It was not a lead that was destined to last long though.

Airdrie robbed Ryan Thomson of the ball and Furtado found himself clean through on goal, coolly slotting under Belford.

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It was end to end stuff and there would be one more goal left in the tie.

Fortunately, it came for the hosts with 15 minutes left on the clock.

Dykes' cross into the box was knocked down by Okoh and Beith was in the right place at the right time to smash home from close range for his fifth goal in nine games.

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Airdrie went for broke in the final few minutes to try to salvage at least a point.

However, the Stranraer defence held firm and on another day the Blues could have pinched another with spaces being left at the other end of the field.

It was a gripping contest with plenty of chances for both teams but, more importantly, one that brings a very welcome three points for Farrell's men.

Next up, a home clash with Raith Rovers on Saturday 20 January.

Stranraer: Belford, Robertson, Neill, Woods (Lyon 71), Okoh (Agnew 76), Anderson (Dykes 71), McGowan, Turner, Beith, Hamill, Thomson.
Not used: Gray, Scott, Holland and McLaren.

Airdrieonians: Ferguson, Stewart, MacDonald, McGregor, Brownlie, Watt (Cairns 78), Furtado, McIntosh, Duffy, Carrick (Fry 82), Hastie (Russell 78).
Not used: Edwards, Brown, Higgins and Kerr.

Referee: Kevin Graham
Attendance: 406
HT: 1-1

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Photos: Stranraer FC, Bill McCandlish