Shane-inspired City make it four wins on the spin
SHANE Sutherland fired Elgin City into the League 2 play-off places with a match-winning double in Saturday’s 3-1 win over Queen’s Park.
Manager Gavin Price celebrated his team picking up four consecutive victories for the first time in his two-year reign as Borough Briggs boss.
Sutherland’s brace made it 18 goals from 19 appearance this season and 90 in an Elgin City shirt.
Skipper Brian Cameron started off the scoring, and Elgin’s success moved them up to fourth spot, albeit this was the only League 2 fixture of the day.
Price said: “It’s a satisfying performance. Shane’s link-up play in the first half and his contribution to the team was fantastic.
“Brian Cameron was challenged in recent weeks to get into the box more and try and contribute more to his goal tally which is normally so important to the team.
“That’s the last two weeks he’s done that and he’s really started to play a bit sharper in his own self, so that’s positive.”
A fairly gentle first 20 minutes didn’t prepare the 658 fans for an action-packed finish to the first half.
Elgin got a scare when Queen’s Park dangerman Salim Kouider-Aissa crashed in a 20 yarder which keeper Tom McHale did well to parry.
Within three minutes the home side were ahead when skipper Cameron took a fine touch on Sutherland’s well weighted pass and although his first effort was saved by Willie Muir, Cameron followed up to guide home the 23rd minute opener.
Back came the Spiders two minutes later with an attack ended by Rabin Omar’s challenge on David Galt which saw a penalty awarded, despite loud home protests.
Kouider-Aissa’s kick was saved by the diving McHale but the striker followed up to fire home the equaliser.
City were back in front on the half hour mark, Sutherland scoring for the fifth consecutive game after Muir fumbled Kane Hester’s low shot.
Sutherland then went close with a deflected first-time drive off Daniel MacKay’s free kick which spun just wide.
The striker didn’t take long to register his 18th goal of the season, claiming a touch on MacKay’s shot from the left to make it 3-1 on 39 minutes.
It was a lively first half showing by Elgin, but Queen’s Park had the elements in their favour after the interval.
Moments after the restart Elgin strung together a fine move between Sutherland, Russell Dingwall and Hester to play in MacKay, who fired over when he might have been better off playing the ball across goal.
The Glasgow side nearly pulled one back from Ciaran Summers’ free kick from deep on the right which swerved on to the top of the crossbar.
Dingwall forced keeper Muir into action with a stinging drive on 64 minutes.
The game became untidy with petty offences and a string of yellow cards.
City’s lead seldom looked under any threat, though they needed keeper McHale to make a great save when Queens’ sub Billy Mortimer burst clean through on 88 minutes.
Elgin City 3 Queen's Park 1
Elgin scorers: Brian Cameron (23), Shane Sutherland (30, 39).
Queen's scorer: Salim Kouider-Aissa (25)
Elgin: McHale; Cooper, Bronsky, McDonald, Spark; MacKay (MacEwan 80), Dingwall (McHardy 89), Cameron, Omar; Hester (Aitken 68), Sutherland.
Subs: Loveland, Aitken, Wilson, Sopel, Hoban.
Yellow cards: McDonald, Spark
Queen’s: Muir; Block, McGrory, Jamieson, Summers; Gibson (Foy 80), Lidouren; Agyeman (Purdue 68), Galt, Moore (Mortimer 79); Kouider-Aissa.
Subs: Grant, Clark, Main, Heraghty.
Yellow cards: Summers, Gibson, Moore
Referee: Scott Lambie