Sunnybank moved within three points of second place Stonehaven after an excellent 2-1 success over McBookie.com First Division leaders Stoneywood Parkvale.
The visitors went in front in the 14th minute at Arjo Wiggins Park when Clark Petrie’s 25-yard free kick took a deflection which completely fooled the keeper.
Home side Stoneywood Parkvale fought back, though, coming close on several occasions.
But Bank then had the ball in the net again, but it was rightly disallowed for offside.
Not so clear cut was a Kevin Robertson free-kick for the visitors which hit the underside of the bar before appearing to bounce over the line, only for the referee to wave play on.
After the break, Stoneywood Parkvale started strongly and were rewarded with the equaliser after 58 minutes, with Curtis Kane firing home with his left foot from fifteen yards.
Kane came close to putting the home side in front for the first time nine minutes later, but fired just wide from an acute angle.
With ten minutes remaining, the home side’s Martyn Paul picked up a second yellow when he slid in with Heathryfold keeper Keller Emslie.
The visitors took full advantage with time running out, grabbing the winner thanks to a fine finish from Robertson which gave the home keeper no chance whatsoever.
Sunnybank assistant manager Steven Sim, in charge with gaffer Paul Leahy having to self-isolate, knows how important the victory was.
He said: “It was a much-needed win and keeps us in the hunt.
“I was particularly pleased for Kevin as he possibly should have had one earlier on from the free-kick. He’s had such an injury-hit time of things, it was great to see him get the winner.
“With so many games being played at the start of the season due to the uncertainty of Covid, we now only have four games left in the league, so they’ll be quite spaced out as you don’t want to finish your league season in February.
“The way it’s worked out, Stonehaven didn’t have a game at the weekend and neither ourselves nor Stoneywood Parkvale are playing this week.
“Stoneywood Parkvale have been excellent all season and Stonehaven are up there, too.
“Realistically, I reckon we have to win all of the games we have left to have a chance of promotion and, even then, we’ll probably be looking for favours elsewhere.
“It’s been the club’s ambition to get back up to the Superleague for a few seasons now, but this is such a tough league to get out of. You really need to put a run together and, to do that, we’ll need to perform like we did on Saturday, when I thought it was two teams trying to play the right way and a good game of football.”
Next up for Sunnybank is a home clash with Dufftown on the 22nd.