Cove Rangers boss Paul Hartley lavished praise on his players after they came from behind to inflict a morale-sapping defeat on title rivals Edinburgh City.
The Citizens took the lead on a wild and windy afternoon at Balmoral Stadium through Scott Shepherd three minutes into the second half before Daniel Higgins equalised with a stunning volley soon after.
Edinburgh substitute Blair Henderson passed up a great chance to put his side back in front five minutes from time when he was denied by Cove stopper Stuart McKenzie before Rory McAllister fired home the winning goal two minutes from time.
The victory moves Cove six points clear at the League 2 summit and maintains the Aberdeen side’s perfect record at home with 12 wins out of 12 at Balmoral Stadium this term.
Hartley said: “There is nothing done yet – we just have to keep going.
“This is a tough league with a lot of good teams in it.
“Edinburgh City showed their quality and our players had to dig deep to get back into the game.
“It was a tough day for everybody from the supporters to the players.
“The conditions were difficult and I thought the players showed great character, especially after going a goal down.
“It wasn’t the prettiest of games but I didn’t expect it to be.
“We had to dig in and we showed great resilience.
“I’m really proud of the players.
“They showed a different side to themselves. I think this is the first time we have gone behind at home so it keeps the home record going.
“It is a terrific home record.”
Hartley admitted the difficult playing conditions took some of the sting out of the fixture with both sides forced to adopt a more direct approach.
He said: “Both teams are passing teams but some of the situations become a bit of a lottery.
“I think you have to give the players credit.
“You also have to give the fans credit for turning up to watch in those conditions.”
McAllister, who was in the right place to poke home a Jamie Masson corner in the 88th minute, felt his side deserved to take all three points.
The former Peterhead captain, who joined Cove last month, said: “We created lots of chances.
“They had one good chance at the end but I felt we had the better chances.
“Their goalkeeper made a couple of good saves from me in the first half and it was just a relief to get the goal and win the game.
“It was a good feeling.”
Edinburgh City boss James McDonaugh remained hopeful his side could work their way back into a position to mount a serious challenge to Cove’s title bid.
He said: “We fought back to cut the gap to three so hopefully we can fight back again to close the gap.
“There are 12 games to go and we won’t give up, that’s for sure.
“There are a lot of hard games to come for both teams.
“We are disappointed not to take something from the game.”