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LUCKLESS Stranraer remain bottom of the league after two second half strikes gave East Fife all three points.

The Blues enjoyed plenty of possession and created a number of chances but failed to turn that into goals.

A frustrating afternoon was rounded off with goals from Ross Davidson and former Blue Scott Agnew, who ensured Darren Young’s men remain in the hunt for a play-off place at the top of the table.

Stevie Farrell was able to call upon Jordan Allan and Adam Cummins, who had been injury doubts before the game.

However, Jamie Hamill, Ryan Thomson, Grant Gallagher and David Smith were all on the sidelines, with the options reduced further by the departure of Mark Stewart.

Robert Jones was given his first start for the Blues, lining up against his old side, who he scored against in the reverse fixture.

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He pulled an effort past the post after good play by Andy Stirling and Cameron Elliott as Stranraer dominated much of the opening half hour.

East Fife’s best chance of the first 45 minutes came moments later and that came about through Stranraer’s own slackness.

Max Currie’s attempted clearance fell straight to Anton Dowds, who failed to capitalise and allowed Currie to smother the loose ball at his feet.

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That was a rare foray forward for the visitors, who had goalkeeper Brett Long to thank for the scores being blank at the interval.

Stranraer’s free-kick into the box was played to Elliott, who smashed a ferocious shot on goal but Long did well to divert the ball to safety.

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Elliott headed wide after the restart, with Lee Hamilton nodding over moments later.

Top scorer James Hilton then called Long into action again with a fierce drive from 25 yards but the Blues could not find a way past the East Fife number one.

Unfortunately, those missed chances would come back to haunt Stranraer, with the deadlock broken on 64 minutes.

Substitute Danny Denholm kept the chance alive and rolled the ball back to Davidson, who scored from the edge of the box.

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Stranraer huffed and puffed to get back into the game, with Farrell forced into another defensive reshuffle late on.

Scott Robertson limped off with a groin strain, with Jones also coming off and Ian Smith and David Dangana brought on.

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However, they could not find a way through the East Fife defence for an equaliser.

Instead, they were undone as the game entered stoppage time.

Former Blue Ryan Wallace had gone down in the box and as Stranraer attempted to clear the ball it struck the forward.

Aaron Dunsmore was quick to capitalise and rolled the ball to the unmarked Agnew, who tapped home.

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More than a few in Stair Park felt Wallace had handled the ball but that was not the opinion of referee Duncan Williams, who awarded the goal.

The lack of goals for Stranraer is clearly an issue and one which Farrell fully acknowledges.

However, Stranraer need to find their shooting boots this coming weekend when second bottom Forfar Athletic make the trip down the A77.

Stranraer: Currie, Robertson (Smith 80), Allan, Cummins, Hamilton, McManus, Pignatiello, Hilton (Murphy 85), Stirling, Elliott, Jones (Dangana 80).
Not used: Burgess.

East Fife: Long, Dunsmore, Murdoch, Watson, Higgins, Slattery, Hunter (Denholm 64), Davidson, Agnew, Wallace, Dowds.
Not used: Church, Watt, Boyd, Duggan, Baker and Hart.

Referee: Duncan Williams
Attendance: 274
HT: 0-0

Photos: Bill McCandlish, Stranraer FC