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Stranraer 2-0 Stenhousemuir

Scorers: Dolan (35) and Edgar (75)

Goals from James Dolan and Ryan Edgar against league champions Stenhousemuir proved not enough to prevent Stranraer from finishing bottom of League Two.

The Blues knew they needed to win and for Clyde to slip up at Elgin to have any chance of moving off the foot of the table.

Stranraer held up their end of the bargain but will now face a two-legged play-off with East Kilbride over the coming fortnight.

Manager Scott Agnew made five changes from the side that had disappointed at Forfar Athletic.

Out went Cammy Williamson, Murray Miller, Matty Grant, Ben Armour and Deryn Lang with Finn Ecrepont, Kyle Fleming, Dolan, Tom Orr and Dylan Forrest coming into the starting line-up.

Dylan Forrest came into the side following suspension

Dolan had Stranraer’s first chance of the afternoon after collecting the ball near the halfway line.

He powered forward on the left and got his shot away but it was an easy save for former Stranraer goalkeeper Curtis Lyle.

It was not long until Stranraer’s own goalkeeper, Lewis Budinauckas, was called into action.

Chris McQueen did well to block Ross Taylor’s effort but the ball fell kindly to Bradley Rodden, whose effort seemed to be sneaking into the bottom corner before Budinauckas pushed it away for a corner.

The deadlock should have been broken just after the quarter hour mark.

Grant Gallagher’s deep cross to the back post was kept in by Dolan and fell to Orr in the six-yard box.

The ball was at an awkward height for the frontman and he could not get enough on his shot to get it beyond Lyle.

Forrest was not far away with a fierce free-kick from the edge of the box before Stranraer got the first goal.

James Dolan fired Stranraer into the lead with a neat near post finish

A well worked move down the right involved Sean McIntosh, Orr and Gallagher, who played a low ball into the box.

Dolan got across his marker at the near post and gave the Blues a well deserved lead.

Despite that good play, the visitors should have been level at the break.

Euan O’Reilly did brilliantly to keep the ball in and crossed for Rodden, whose diving header was straight at Budinauckas when anywhere else would surely have resulted in a goal.

Rodden then completed his hat-trick of chances when he volleyed into the turf just before the half time whistle.

Lang was brought off the bench at the break and immediately caused the Stenhousemuir defence problems.

Stranraer lad Ryan Edgar came off the bench to find the net on his home debut

He had blazed over the bar before breaking the offside trap.

The frontman was unselfish in squaring for Orr, who was denied by Lyle and then Kinlay Bilham cleared off the line to deny Dolan his second of the game.

Lang scuffed a shot across goal as Stranraer turned up the heat and then the striker mishit one from the edge of the box as the Blues looked destined to add to their lead.

The goal was coming though and it was a popular goalscorer for the Blues.

McIntosh lifted a cross into the box and Edgar rose highest, nodding down through the legs of Lyle for his first goal for the first team.

The Blues would have more chances over the closing stages but events at the opposite end of the country mean they will now face Scottish Lowland Football League champions East Kilbride.

Stranraer: Budinauckas, McIntosh, Ecrepont, Ross, McQueen, Forrest, Hawkshaw (Grant 57), Gallagher, Fleming (Lang 46), Dolan, Orr (Edgar 57).
Not used: Williamson, Gilmartin and Downie.

Stenhousemuir: Lyle, Anderson, O’Reilly, Buchanan, Meechan, Bilham, Brown, Berry, Aitken, Taylor (Kirkpatrick 62), Rodden (Yates 62).
Not used: Stirling and Jamieson.

Referee: Iain Snedden
Attendance: 738
HT: 1-0

Photos: Bill McCandlish