Midfielder Bryan Gilfillan set Peterhead on their way to victory at Forthbank on Saturday and believes he can help Jim McInally’s men realise their play-off ambitions.
The Blue Toon are seven points outside the top four, with a rearranged game at Ayr to be slotted in, but in their fixtures between now and January 3 they play all of the leading contenders, starting with in-form Stranraer at Balmoor.
The former Gretna and Cowdenbeath player followed up his late equaliser against Brechin a fortnight earlier with the opener against the bottom club, which today celebrates the 30th anniversary of itsfamous 20-0 win against Selkirk in the Scottish Cup first round at Annfield.
Gilfillan, who has often been used as a substitute this season, said: “I still don’t think we have totally clicked but we are picking up points and this was an important win as we want to be in the play-offs.
“We’ve got a lot of big games coming up because we have the leading four teams to play over the festive period.
“We are confident we can push on – Morton and Dunfermline might be full-time but there is a lot of experience in our squad and that can only be a good thing.
“We came up last season but that squad had the ability to play at a higher level so that has made things easier. It’s been a bit frustrating because I have been something of a bit-part player this season, but it’s good to be starting games at the moment and I’ve scored in the last two matches.”
Neither side created too much early on but captain Steven Noble crashed a shot against the bar following a free kick before Gilfillan headed in a Jamie Stevenson corner to give Peterhead the lead after half an hour as Stirling’s inability to defend set-pieces again came back to haunt them.
Albion earned a 1-1 draw at Balmoor on the opening day but have managed just one win in League 1 – 5-4 at Stenhousemuir in August.
They fell further behind early in the second half when midfielder Phil Johnston could only head the ball into his own net after Callum Reidford had done well to parry a Ryan Strachan effort following good work from Rory McAllister.
Steven Doris gave the Binos hope when he scrambled the ball home following a corner for his first league goal since his summer move from Dundee, but three minutes later Cammy Kerr rifled a 20-yarder past Reidford with the aid of a deflection.
Sandy Cunningham reduced the deficit 10 minutes from time with a diving header from a right-wing cross and the teenager came close again in stoppage time, when his header dropped just over, but an equaliser would have been harsh on Peterhead.