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Marvin Andrews reckons Montrose still have enough time and talent to avoid the relegation play-off that could open a trapdoor to the Highland League.

Andrews said: “We are all disappointed as this was never a 3-0 game and we know how important it is that we pick up valuable points.

“With their first goal just before half-time it was bad luck as the ball took a wicked deflection off me and gave our keeper no chance.

“You tend to get bad luck like that when you are struggling at the bottom and if you are at the top you perhaps get more luck.

“We have just played two of the best teams in the league in Arbroath and Albion Rovers and we have competed well.

“There are seven games left for us to try to get a few victories and we believe we can do this.”

Montrose almost made the perfect start when Ross Campbell intercepted a slack pass from Ross Dunlop and ran into the penalty box only for Rovers keeper Neil Parry to dive bravely at the striker’s feet.

Instead the league leaders went ahead on 37 minutes when Ally Love’s shot from the edge of the box took a wicked deflection off Andrews and spun over the head of Stuart McKenzie.

Scott Johnston tried an ambitious chip shot from the right of the Rovers penalty area but Parry saved well as the Gable Endies responded.

But they went further behind on 61 minutes when Ross McCord fouled Eddie Ferns at the edge of the box and Ross Davidson sent a perfect free-kick into the bottom right corner of the net.

On-loan Alloa attacker Ferns then completed the scoring with a 22-yard shot that flew into the top corner.

Montrose refused to throw in the towel and Graham Webster saw his well-hit shot turned on to the bar and over by Parry with 12 minutes left.

Gable Endies boss Paul Hegarty said: “We are disappointed as we were trying to build on the win over Arbroath but I cannot fault my players’ commitment.

“We matched Albion Rovers in many ways and it was tough losing a deflected goal at an important time.

“There was not much between the sides but they are a dogged team and you can see why they are top of the league.”