A Rory McAllister treble sent Cove Rangers to the top of League One after they saw off 10-man Alloa Athletic 3-1.
McAllister had put Cove in front early in the second half but a scrappy equaliser from Steven Boyd drew Alloa level.
But with seven minutes to go McAllister was on hand again to crash in from close range to seal the points.
He rolled home his third from 12 yards to put Cove at the League One summit, ahead of Queen’s Park’s game with Dumbarton on Sunday.
Paul Hartley made three changes from the 1-0 win over Airdrieonians, bringing in Blair Yule, Robbie Leitch and Finlay Robertson for Jamie Masson, Connor Scully and Fraser Fyvie.
Cove were handed a man advantage within the first 25 seconds of the game. Referee Alan Muir was quick to brandish a red card for Alloa’s Mouhamed Niang for a challenge on Shay Logan, which was reckless but also saw the midfielder win the ball.
It altered the dynamic of the game early and Cove tried to capitalise, with Harry Milne going close and Mitch Megginson seeing a couple of shots go wide.
But the visitors were struggling to fashion chances against a resolute Alloa, who had reorganised well after losing a man. Rory McAllister sent a free-kick angling over the top after Megginson was chopped down, however the home side were holding firm.
Adam King had an effort from just inside the penalty area parried away by Stuart McKenzie while Robertson saw a shot deflected past the post before the break.
Milne had the first sight of goal in the second half for Cove, meeting an Iain Vigurs corner but steering his header wide.
Hartley’s side did break did the deadlock on 51 minutes. Logan’s cross from the right narrowly evaded Megginson but was met by McAllister on the slide as he headed in his seventh of the season.
51' | AAFC 0-1 CRFC
— Cove Rangers FC (@CoveRangersFC) October 2, 2021
Robertson and Logan both flashed shots over the bar as Cove looked to add to their lead but they had not put Alloa to bed yet.
Stefan Scougall flashed a corner towards the near post and amid a crowd of bodies, it appeared to hit Boyd and creep inside the near post.
Substitute Kevin Cawley then hit the post for Alloa as they threatened to steal in front before Cove’s leading scorer struck again.
Milne slid Masson in down the left and his ball across the face of goal presented a simple tap-in for McAllister.
The ex-Peterhead man completed his hat-trick in the 89th minute from the penalty spot, after Megginson was brought down by Craig Howie.