Scorers: East Fife - Watson (58) and Page (79); Stranraer - Agnew (36) and Anderson (48 and 53)

ef 20180428 008 g1

STRANRAER survived East Fife's second half fightback to wrap up another season with three points.

On paper, neither team had anything to play for but the two sides served up an entertaining affair.

A single change from the defeat to Raith Rovers seven days earlier saw Dean Hawkshaw brought into the team in place of Cameron Elliott.

Both sides had chances in the early stages with Stephen Okoh and Grant Anderson firing over at one end and Chris Duggan and Adam Livingstone missing the target at the other.

Finally, Stranraer carved out a genuine chance just after the half hour mark.

A neat piece of play by Cameron MacPherson saw the ball worked to Scott Robertson.

ef 20180428 004

The defender danced his way into the box before pulling the trigger only to see his shot blocked.

It fell kindly to Okoh but his goalbound effort was cleared off the line.

The travelling fans would not have to wait too long for the opening goal though.

Kyle Turner was brought down by Jonathan Page on the edge of the box with the defender shown a yellow card and the Stranraer midfielder suffering a sore one in the process.

A stoppage of a couple of minutes gave everyone the chance to catch their breath and, when the referee blew to restart play, Scott Agnew curled home a delightful free-kick.

ef 20180428 005 g1
ef 20180428 006 g1

Still, the Fifers could have finished the half on level terms.

Page headed over before a long ball over the top caught out Morgyn Neill and Jamie Hamill.

Duggan reacted quickest but hooked his shot across goal and wide of the post.

Then, in first half stoppage time, with the visiting defence appealing for offside, Matthew Knox should have done better than poke wide from six yards.

East Fife were made to pay for those missed chances just three minutes after the restart.

ef 20180428 011 g

There seemed little on when Okoh picked up the ball wide on the left but a burst of pace sent him clear and his cross to the back post was inch perfect for Anderson to nod home from close range.

Five minutes later and it was 3-0.

Again it was Anderson who nodded the ball home after MacPherson's pinpoint corner.

ef 20180428 015
ef 20180428 018 g

However, just when it looked like the away fans could relax, East Fife got one back.

If Agnew's free-kick was impressive, Craig Watson's strike was equally stunning.

He seized on a bouncing ball fully 30 yards out and sent a dipping volley beyond a helpless Max Currie.

ef 20180428 021

Stranraer were looking threatening going forward though and really should have wrapped things up with 18 minutes left to play.

MacPherson collected a loose ball and found himself with just Ryan Goodfellow to beat.

He lifted his shot over the goalkeeper, with the Stranraer fans rising to their feet to celebrate goal number four only to then realise it was the side netting that had been found and not the back of the net.

ef 20180428 022

Seven minutes later and the nerves grew as Darren Young's men narrowed the advantage to just one.

Defender Page was in the right place to nod home from close range following a corner on the right, with East Fife now smelling blood.

Duggan went down in the box under pressure from Chris McGowan with nothing given and, before Stranraer could settle themselves, they were breathing a sigh of relief as substitute Kevin Smith could only hit the crossbar from close range.

Still, Stranraer could have wrapped up the season in style through substitute Gavin Scott.

ef 20180428 024

The teenager managed to wriggle free and found himself through one-on-one with Goodfellow, who did exceptionally well to stick out a hand and make a goal-saving block.

So, the curtain comes down on a memorable season with the Stranraer squad looking much different from that who kicked off the season in July against St Mirren.

Despite those many changes, the Blues finished the campaign with five wins in six and four away wins on the spin - the first time since December 2014.

ef 20180428 026

East Fife: Goodfellow, Page, Watson, Livingstone (Linton 74), Allardice, Dunsmore, Slattery, Millar, Thomson, Duggan, Knox (Smith 64).
Not used: Kane, Wilkie, Jones and MacKenzie.

Stranraer: Currie, Robertson, Neill, McGowan, Hamill, MacPherson, Hawkshaw (Dykes 85), Agnew, Anderson, Okoh (Scott 75), Turner (Elliott 70).
Not used: Barron, Gray, Baxter and McLaren.

Referee: Scott Millar
HT: 0-1
Attendance: 426

Photos: Stranraer FC