Ten-man Berwick went without a win for the third successive Scottish League Two match as basement side Elgin City hauled themselves off the bottom with two second half goals.
Jonny Fairbairn was dismissed in the 31st minute for the ‘Gers for a last man challenge on Craig Gunn and the visitors went ahead in the 70th minute when Archie MacPhee netted from the spot.
As Berwick pushed for a late equaliser, they were caught out on the halfway line and Daniel Moore tapped home following a swift breakaway.
After last week’s 4-2 defeat against Annan Athletic, Kerr Young was reinstated at the heart of the defence following his one-match suspension while Craig Dargo and Ross Gray replaced Andy Russell and Scott Maxwell.
Inside the first five minutes there were chances at both ends as Darryl McHardy headed wide from a corner and Darren Lavery brought out a smart stop from Elgin keeper Ross Laidlaw after good work from Paul Willis and Dargo.
Steven Notman and Fairbairn each missed chances from Berwick corners and McHardy proved to be an aerial threat again for the visitors, heading over from a Moore free-kick.
Just after the half hour mark though, the match changed as the ‘Gers foolishly lost possession from a throw-in deep inside the Elgin half and a long ball from the back set away the dangerous Gunn. The striker drew the challenge from Fairbairn and with no team-mates covering, referee Don Robertson was left with little option but to send the centre-back off.
Elgin immediately tried to make their advantage count and Billy Bald was on hand to produce a stunning close range save from Dennis Wyness’ header and up the other end, Dargo got in behind and lobbed the ball over Laidlaw but Alexander Gilchrist was on hand to scramble clear.
Lee Currie shot narrowly over at the start of the second half after build-up work from Dargo and Gray before Bald was called into action again, getting down at the feet of MacPhee after the winger had got in behind Ross Drummond.
With 20 minutes remaining though, the visitors were awarded a penalty when Devon Jacobs pulled back Craig Thomson in the box and MacPhee stepped up and sent Bald the wrong way from the spot.
Despite their numeric disadvantage, the ‘Gers pushed for an equaliser and had three strikers on the pitch in the last 10 minutes in Lavery and substitutes Blair Henderson and Russell.
Berwick couldn’t muster any chances of note in that time and with the defence open, substitute Shane Sutherland offered a scare by firing over the bar after being put through one-on-one with Bald. It was game, set and match deep into stoppage time though when Notman – who put in a superb shift in an unfamiliar centre-back role following Fairbairn’s dismissal – was dispossessed on the halfway line and substitute Ceiran McLean squared for Moore to finish into an open net.