Livingston put several days of negative headlines behind them in the best possible way by producing their best result of the season, defeating Queen of the South 4-1 at Palmerston.
The West Lothian side were on the receiving end of criticism after Kieran Gibbons’ tackle on Rangers winger Nathan Oduwa in last Tuesday’s Petrofac Training Cup quarter-final. That was followed up by manager Mark Burchill’s clumsy verbal defence of the player, which brought claims of racism by the Rangers Supporters Trust.
The Lions started the day in bottom spot and went behind after 27 minutes when Jordan Marshall picked out Dale Hilson with a cross and the former Forfar man flicked home.
The game started to turn Livi’s way five minutes after half-time when Jordan White headed on for Scott Pittman to slot home from six yards. White nodded his side in front midway through the second half, with substitute Liam Buchanan scoring with 15 minutes and then five minutes left to secure the win.
Livingston assistant head coach David Hopkin took on media duties as he said: “This result has been coming for a few games now. We have been playing well but not taking our chances. Four goals in 35 minutes is a terrific way to show we can score, and this result gives us a terrific platform to build on for the rest of the season.”
Doonhamers manager James Fowler said: “We knew Livingston would come here wounded by the criticism they were receiving and determined to do something about it. We never handled things in the second half.”
Falkirk moved back into third place after dismantling hosts Dumbarton 5-0, with John Baird grabbing a hat-trick inside the opening 48 minutes. Bob McHugh and Blair Alston were also on target, and Falkirk manager Peter Houston said it was “a terrific response” after the loss at home to Hibs in midweek.
Alloa slumped back to the foot of the table after losing 1-0 to Morton at Cappielow thanks to Ross Forbes’ well-taken second-half free kick.
Morton boss Jim Duffy said: “It was an important win after a disappointing run of results.”