SPARTANS claimed the Lowland League title despite being held to a goalless draw by East Stirlingshire at Ainslie Park.

With only a one-point cushion over second-placed East Kilbride going into their final games, Dougie Samuel’s team had to rely on Stirling University causing a shock at Falkirk Stadium.

Angus Mair’s 50thminute strike and a defelcted goal from Rory MacEwan gave Uni a 2-0 win to prevent Kilby overtaking Spartans.

A relieved Samuel said: “That wasn’t the way we wanted to win the title but East Stirlingshire are a quality team and they made it very difficult.

“The players have been brilliant all season and I’m delighted for everyone involved with the club.

“We now have a few weeks to prepare for the play-offs.”

Dalbeattie took a giant stride towards safety with a 4-1 victory over Selkirk at Islecroft Stadium.

Lewis Sloan’s first half double and strikes from Curtis Wilson and Scot Milligan eased relegation fears for Star, who just need a point from their final game.

David Banjo scored Selkirk’s consolation.

Jack Guthrie’s hat-trick helped Edinburgh University secure Lowland League football for another season.

The medical graduate, who has netted 120 goals during his studies in the capital, said: “This was my final match for Edinburgh University and I’m delighted to go out with a hat-trick.

“We knew we needed one last win to make sure we wouldn’t finish second bottom and we can all breathe a little easier now.”

Joe Boyle and Dan Maskrey were also on target in the 4-1 win over eight-man Gretna, who had Jack Hunter, Ellis Pearson and Jake Smith all sent off in a bad-tempered second half.

Whitehill Welfare also ended any doubts over their Lowland League survival with a convincing 4-2 victory over Gala Fairydean Rovers.

Fabio Neto, Kyle Mitchell, Darren McCraw and Josh Morris all scored for Gary Small’s team.

The Welfare boss said: "We had lost our last eight games so winning today, and securing our place in the league, is a huge weight off our shoulders.

"We only had two signed players when I arrived last summer so it's a big achievement to stay up."

Rhys Craigie and Grant Rose scored for Gala.

BSC Glasgow closed in on third place with a 5-0 win over bottom side Hawick Royal Albert at the Indodrill Stadium.

Jack Smith netted a hat-trick with Ross McMillan and Jamie Mills also on target.

Andy Mair’s second half strike gave Civil Service Strollers the points at Galabank against Edusport.