Just a week ago, the Dark Blues suffered a devastating 6-0 defeat in the Scottish Premiership at Celtic Park.
However, McPake's men bounced back strongly against the Steelmen to edge through to the quarter-finals of the cup thanks to a late Lee Ashcroft goal.
McPake said: "I think we had a few tests today. First one was how do you bounce back from a really heavy defeat?
"Right from the off we were in their faces and were going after them. We were on the front foot, getting after the ball.
"The next test is are you going to go in front or go behind? If you go behind, do you crumble? We never got to see that.
"But to go in front, the test then is can you hold on to it which showed real character and bravery to keep playing.
"I think it was the 15th corner we scored from which again showed our positivity. When you rewind back less than a week ago, we lost six at Celtic.
"So when you talk about character and you talk about resilience, we have people who will stand up and be counted.
"I saw that in the dressing room today and that's what pleased me the most because for the last seven minutes they threw everything at us.
"But looking at it we were never really under pressure. We are in the quarter-finals and we will see who we get."