Kane Hester hit a deadly hat-trick as Elgin City edged past League Two winners Queen’s Park 3-2 to secure third spot and a place in the promotion play-offs.
The stunning Borough Briggs result ensures a semi-final double header against runners-up Edinburgh City, at home on Saturday then away next Tuesday.
The fourth-placed Black and Whites needed to win or draw to secure their play-off spot, with Stirling Albion and Stranraer either side of them in the table before kick-off hoping to cash in on a defeat.
Stirling completed their campaign on Saturday, while Stranraer beat Edinburgh 2-1 to take the last play-off spot at Stirling’s expense. They will face Dumbarton or Clyde from League One in the other semi-final.
A swift brace from the division’s top scorer Hester just after the break to his tally to 14 for the season, but Will Baynham headed one back for the visitors. Hester completed his treble on 76 minutes to complete his starring show. Luca Connell struck late on to pile on late nerves.
Home boss made two changes to the starting side which fell to a 2-0 defeat at Edinburgh City at the weekend.
Defender Stephen Bronsky and midfielder Archie Macphee were handed starts, with David Wilson and Craig Brown beginning on the bench.
The Spiders freshened up their ranks too for this final competitive contest before they step up to League One next term. Six changes were made to the team which defeated Edinburgh 2-0 last Thursday.
Elgin almost got their noses in front on 20 minutes when Hester got a sight at goal, but was denied by a first-class Stuart Morrison tackle.
City goalkeeper Thomas McHale provided more assurance at the back when, with the sun in his eyes, he clutched a couple of telling deliveries as the visitors sought a breakthrough.
The last chance of the first half fell to Hester as he unleashed a dipping drive which had just too much height to trouble goalkeeper William Muir.
Queens made four substitutions at the start of the second half in a bid to inject more urgency perhaps into their play.
However, it was Elgin who made it count when a slack pass by one of those subs, Canice Carroll
Little over a minute later and Hester was on hand to stab home the second goal after Brian Cameron’s long-range drive crashed off the woodwork and into his path.
It was dream territory for Elgin, holding a two-goal cushion against the champions and firmly inside the play-off. Price shouted the need for his players to remain switched on.
However, the champions were back in it on 54 minutes when substitute Baynham firmly headed home from a Ross MacLean delivery.
McHale then came to the rescue when he stood firm to save from a fierce shot from MacLean.
Queen’s Park had only lost once this term and were in no mood to finish with another.
However, Hester rounded it off on style with a lethal finish after Queen’s failed to clear their lines.
Connell swept home to score from a sweeping move from the visitors with three minutes left to heighten the tension, but Elgin held on.