THERE was to be no great escape for Alloa who were condemned to relegation from the Championship on Saturday after three years in Scotland's second division.

Of the 25 league games the club have played so far, they've only went two games without defeat on three occasions. There has been no run, no collection of points, and as the season went on and results here and there slipped away, the worst-case scenario became more and more likely.

After a huge and impressive victory away to Queen of the South mid-March, Peter Grant's men have picked up one point from a possible 15, including a bitterly disappointing defeat to fellow relegation contenders Arbroath.

The results left Alloa in a position of needing to win their remaining three games, matching their league total so far, and hope that one of the two teams above them lost three games. Even that would only ensure a play-off position.

On Saturday Raith Rovers were the opposition and they started strongly. Kyle Benedictus had the first shot of the match with barely 60 seconds on the clocks, blasting the ball just wide of Neil Parry's post.

Barely minutes later, Gozie Ugwu's shot was blocked by Liam Dick after the striker managed to evade Scott Taggart and the shot from the rebound was cleared off the line by Andy Graham.

The opening minutes of the match gave the impression it would be a long afternoon for the Wasps, but they slowly took a grip of the game and started to keep a hold of the ball.

Jon Robertson's shot was the hosts' first of the day and went just wide of the post. Stefan Scougall, in a rare start, picked the ball up and raced towards the Raith goal. He found Innes Cameron who played a great switch to Robertson who cut inside onto his left foot and took aim.

Scougall was next to try his luck but the strike from distance was comfortable for Jamie MacDonald on his return to the Indodrill.

Then, Alloa scored. A typically wonderful finish from Kevin Cawley, and for a moment, it felt like this could be it: the beginning of the comeback.

Robertson floated a cross over everyone and nobody bothered to mark Cawley. He has time, plenty of it, to wait for the ball and meets it perfectly with his left foot, smashing it past MacDonald.

The sound of Elmer Bernstein's Great Escape theme fills the air. They couldn't. Could they?

A goal to the good, Alloa did not slow down. Graham, roaming forward, was inches away from finding Scougall's run with a terrific attempted through ball.

At the other end Taggart and Graham dealt with the threat of Ugwu and managed to shackle him from getting near a cross.

Alloa have shot themselves in the foot on so many occasions this season, it's a wonder they're still able to walk. After holding their lead to half-time, barely five minutes had passed in the second period when disaster struck.

Taggart, caught dilly-dallying at the edge of his box, lost the ball to Ugwu., who was then brought down by Parry and, to rub salt in the wound, the keeper was dismissed.

]Raith now had their opportunity to get back into the game as Alloa are left without their first-choice keeper and Scougall, one of their attacking threats, who made way for replacement Reece Willison. We had seen this movie too many times this season.

Ugwu scores, and then Raith take the lead. A well-worked goal down the left saw Regan Hendry cut the ball back for Dylan Tait to fire past Willison.

Chances would fall Alloa's way but they were unable to convert. A slack sideways pass from Raith's Iain Davidson rolled into the path of Alan Trouten and he drove towards goal. From outside the box he lashed a shot that went just over the bar.

Trouten then pounced on Cameron's header and attempted to take the ball around the keeper. Trouten hit the post and went down and while Alloa screamed for a penalty – the referee disagreed and Trouten's protests earned him a yellow.

More slack passing from Raith allowed Trouten time to turn and play in Cameron but his attempt to lift the ball over MacDonald didn't have enough conviction and the keeper knocked the ball wide.

Alloa were able to get the ball in the net late on but Trouten was judged offside in the build-up and Cameron's goal was disallowed.

And so the whistle blew and Alloa's season is effectively over. Another decent performance was rewarded with a defeat. The bottom line is Peter Grant's men have played 25 league games and lost 15 of them.

The two remaining league games will be played with pride on the line. The long road back to the Championship begins on Saturday.

ALLOA: Parry, Robertson, Graham Taggart, Dick, Grant (Thomson), Hetherington, Trouten, Cawley, Scougall (Willison), Cameron (Buchanan). UNUSED SUBS: Jamieson, Connelly, Murray, Williamson