MARK Stewart did his former club Falkirk a good turn last night as his instinctive double inspired Raith Rovers to a 3-0 win over play-off-chasing Queen of the South.
Scorers: Raith Rovers - Stewart (23, 78), Vaughan (82)
Stewart, who spent five years with the Bairns, took his tally for the season to seven with strikes either side of the break, before a wonderful solo strike by Lewis Vaughan sealed the win.
Rovers’ triumph provides the latest twist in the race for the top four, with Falkirk the beneficiaries. Peter Houston’s side moved to within a point of Queens with their own triumph in Fife last night, beating Cowdenbeath.
After just three minutes, Stewart scampered into the box and fizzed a low drive narrowly past Alexander Clark’s right-hand post. However, the nippy forward would not be denied. He was the swiftest to react in the box after Clark parried a header from Jason Thomson, rattling the ball into the roof of the net from eight yards.
David McGurn produced a fine low save to keep out a towering Andy Dowie header in the second half, while Kevin Holt nodded wide from a tantalising Danny Carmichael cross.
But Stewart concluded a slick Rovers counter-attack after 78 minutes with a glancing header past Clark.
The coup de grace came as Vaughan slalomed past several powder-puff challenges before curling a clinical right-footed shot past Clark.
Raith Rovers: McGurn, Thomson, Watson, Barr, McKeown, Anderson (McKay 83), Callachan (Scott 64), Fox, Conroy, Vaughan (Elliot 87), Stewart. Subs not used: Cuthbert, Hill, Robertson, Matthews.
Queen of the South: Clark, Dowie, Higgins, Durnan (Reilly 55), Holt, McShane (McKenna 85), Millar, Kidd (Mitchell 72), Paton, Carmichael, Lyle. Subs not used: Atkinson, Pickard, A Smith, D Smith.