Rossvale’s run of eight league wins in a row came to an end at the hands of a Shotts side who were the last team to beat them back in October.
It took a late goal to settle the match but despite the defeat Gordon Moffat’s side remain top of the Central First Division table.
Early on Vale’s Greg Fernie was booked for diving before a Kirk Forbes free-kick went narrowly past.
Liam McGonigle’s fine run down the right then set up a chance for Gary Giffin whose shot brought out a great diving save from leaving the Shotts defence stranded nearly came to a goal when his cross into the box found Giffin whose shot brought out a great save from Johnny Murdoch in the Shotts goal.
Rossvale skipper Jamie Hunter broke down a rare Shotts attack midway in his own half and charged forward before trying to find Giffin charging into the box, but he couldn’t get onto the end of it and Murdoch had an easy save to make,
Vale were again unlucky when Forbes found Fernie whose finishing let him down and a fine team passing move then failed to bring a breakthrough.
A Steven Aitken sailed over Jamie Donnelly’s bar, but Rossvale were soon back on the attack and Fernie played through Giffin whose shot was again easily stopped by Murdoch.
McGonigle was giving Max McKee a torrid time and Vale thought they had won a penalty when the Shotts man upended him. But the referee decided it was just outside the box and from the free-kick Forbes found Fernie whose shot again brought out another fine save from Murdoch.
Shotts made a change at half-time, not unexpectedly replacing McKee with ex-Vale man Glenn Eadie.
But Rossvale started the second half on thew attack and McGonigle came close again after some more fancy footwork.
Shotts played some nice football after this and again Aitken shot over from a good position. They were coming more into the game and causing Vale a few problems.
Rossvale replaced Liam Chrichton with Josh O’Hare and the substitute almost scored with his first touch, but his shot was turned away for a corner.
Shotts were the more dangerous in attack in the second half, although not seriously testing Donnelly, and with ten minutes to go they nearly went a goal down when Ally Martin tried to clear a cross and instead sent the ball heading into his own goal.
But Murdoch came to his rescue and cleared the ball upfield where they won a corner.
And from the resulting cross Scott Crone rose unchallenged to head the ball into the net and hand Rossvale their first league defeat since their 3-2 defeat at Shotts on October 7.
With closest challengers Benburb’s game called off, Rossvale remain two points clear at the top, although they now have just one game in hand.
Vale get a break from league business next week when take on Lesmahagow at home in the second round of Central League Cup. Vale also face Lesmahagow in the league, away, the following week.