McKenna winner caps a much improved Rangers' performance
Berwick Rangers 1-0 Stirling Albion
Berwick manager Robbie Horn was full of praise for his players after watching them beat second from top Stirling Albion at Shielfield on Saturday.
“After conceding five goals at Elgin last week I was looking for a reaction from the players, and to a man I got it,” he said.
“They were tremendous today and thoroughly deserved the victory.
“Michael McKenna’s goal was a wonderful strike, it could have win any game, but any one of the players could have been the match winner, including goalkeeper Robby McCrorie, who made several first class saves. He is a player with a big future ahead of him.”
McKenna netted the only goal of the game in the eighth minute with a tremendous strike from the right side of the box after striker Aaron Murrell’s original effort was blocked.
Just a few minutes later Darren Smith headed narrowly over for the visitors before McCrorie came to Berwick’s rescue with a double save, going full stretch to save from Neil McLaughlin with a shot from outside the box, before getting down to block Smith on the rebound.
McCrorie also saved will from Ross Kavanagh before Berwick went close to a second goal when centre back Robert Wilson, playing his first league game in almost a year after a knee injury, headed onto the top of the cross bar from a McKenna free kick.
Early in the second half, Jonny Fairbairn made a great block to thwart McLaughlin inside the box
Berwick then made a strong claim for a penalty for alleged hand ball, but their pleas were waved aside by referee Scott Lambie.
In the 81st substitute Darren Lavery battled his way through and shot wide, before the Stirling assistant manager was sent to the stand in the 84th minute.
This was Stirling’s first away league defeat of the season and afterwards man of the match McCrorie said: “I am loving my loan spell here from Rangers.
“I honestly think I have learned more in this half season than I did in the previous two years playing Development football. There is no substitute for experience. That’s about five or six man of the match awards now, the champagne will come in handy with Christmas just around the corner!”
Berwick: McCrorie, Notman, Fairbairn, Wilson, McKinlay, Godinho, Stewart,Phillips, Irving (McDonald 82), McKenna (Thomson 87), Murrell (Lavery 74).
Stirling: Binnie, McGeachie, Thomson, McNeil, Hamilton, Black, Morrison, Caddis, McLaughlin (Dickson 72), Smith, Kavanagh (MacDonald 60).
Referee: Scott Lambie.