Stranraer 5-2 Livingston: Five-goal Blues maul the Lions

Willie Gibson scores Stranraer's third in their 5-2 win over Livingston. Picture: Craig Foy/SNS
Willie Gibson scores Stranraer's third in their 5-2 win over Livingston. Picture: Craig Foy/SNS
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Stranraer overpowered Livingston on a night of remarkable play-off action at Stair Park to take a handsome advantage into Saturday’s second leg with this hammering of a Lions side who stand on the brink of relegation, writes Shaun Niven.

Yet it was the visitors who got off to the perfect start when Jordan White pounced on Sam Stanton’s flick to sweep the ball past Cameron Belford.

Some good defending by Craig Halkett dealt with a dangerous cross from Stranraer’s Willie Gibson but minutes later the Blues were level. Gibson’s cross found Mark McGuigan who turned the ball home at the far post.

The Blues were in front on 18 minutes when a great turn by McGuigan created some space to find Andy Stirling who fired an unstoppable left-foot shot past Marc McCallum from 20 yards.

Five minutes before the break Stranraer grabbed a third when Stirling’s darting run was halted 25 yards out by Morgyn Neill and Gibson bent the resulting free kick into the bottom corner.

Livi were quickly out of the blocks after the break and a last-gasp clearance from Liam Dick denied Liam Buchanan a chance from close range. Buchanan wouldn’t be denied, though, and reduced the deficit by converting White’s pass.

Stranraer responded immediately and when McCallum parried Malcolm’s shot, McGuigan rolled home the rebound.

The Blues completed an incredible night with nine minutes left when Gibson burst in from the right and fired home from a tight angle.