Nicky Clark stole the show at East End Park as his clinical masterclass put Elgin City to the sword in comprehensive fashion.
Clark, who bagged 16 goals last term, started this campaign in similarly clinical fashion, hitting the net four times to help Allan Johnston’s side cruise to a 6-0 win in their Betfred Cup Group B opener.
Michael Paton also got on the scoresheet, while academy graduate Callum Smith made it a rout late on.
“Some of the finishing from Nicky was different class,” said Johnston. “He just has that habit of finding space in the box – the hardest thing to do in football. If we put balls in the right area, he will score. Last season he missed pre-season, yet he still scored a lot of goals.
“This year, he is fit and flying and is looking really sharp.”
Clark broke the deadlock after ten minutes by directing a sumptuous Kallum Higginbotham free-kick into the far corner and quickly doubled his money when he nodded home a wonderful Ryan Williamson cross. Paton made it three, fizzing a low drive beyond the helpless Marc Waters from the edge of the box.
Clark turned a Higginbotham delivery into the net to complete a 25 minute hat-trick of headers, before he rounded off a virtuoso showing by firing a shot beyond Waters after the break.
Seventeen-year-old substitute Smith added late gloss to the score, scampering on to an incisive through-pass and coolly slotting home his maiden goal for the club.