BRIAN RICE insists Alloa only have themselves to blame as they fell to a 4-1 loss to Falkirk.

Alloa had the first chance of the match when the ball fell to Conor Sammon who turned and fired it straight at the keeper.

From there, Falkirk gained the upper hand and costly goalkeeping errors from Jay Hogarth allowed Brad McKay and Kai Kennedy to put the visitors two up.

Rice insists Alloa “beat themselves” as he blasted the Wasps’ defending but was adamant Alloa were still in the playoff hunt.

He said: “I think we beat ourselves today. Our defending was poor today and individual mistakes cost us.

“Young goalkeeper holds his hand up for the first two goals and we gave ourselves a mountain to climb.

“We got ourselves back in the game and then again, poor defending, we don’t stop crosses and we don’t win the ball when it comes in.

“The boys I expect better from defensively didn’t do it today. I’ve said that to them but to be fair to them, they’re an honest bunch of lads, they’ve held their hands up.

“We didn’t defend well enough today.”

Immediately after the break, Alloa found themselves with a lifeline after Jon Robertson won a penalty, which Stefan Scougall converted to bring Alloa back into the game.

It wasn’t to last, however, as Falkirk defender Liam Henderson headed past Hogarth twice at the back post just ten minutes after Alloa scored.

Alloa were lucky not to concede a fifth when Falkirk found themselves in front of an open goal, only to blast it over the bar.

“I thought we were on the front foot [once Scougall scored],” Rice added. “We had them pinned back a little bit.

“We have to hold onto that for 10, 15, 20 minutes and keep at them and keep the back door shut and we didn’t do that today.”

Rice hailed his team for earning the position they had got for themselves, but warned they could not rely on other teams to lose games for them.

The gaffer also called on the Alloa support to do their part in supporting the team.

“The position that we’re in is the one that we have created with our performances all season,” Rice added. “I expect backing from sections of the fans up here.

“I was disappointed today in some of the fans for some of their reactions to the boys. We’re in fourth place and it’s still in our hands."

Alloa hold on to fourth place after Montrose defeated Queen of the South and FC Edinburgh drew with Kelty.

The Wasps were fortunate with these results as it ensures none of the teams immediately below them closed the gap too much.

“We can only look after ourselves. We can’t influence the results elsewhere. Our performances all season have got us in the position we’re in.

“Last time I looked at the league, it’s three full-time teams in front of us and a full-time team below us so we must be doing something right.

“I’m disappointed, I’m angry, I’m frustrated but I know we’ve got a big game next week and we’ll prepare for that.”

Next up for Alloa is a trip to Montrose where just a point would be enough to seal playoffs for the Wasps.