Livi roared off the bottom of the Ladbrokes Championship as they came from behind to claim a thumping win over Queen of the South at Palmerston.
The Lions went into the game on the back of their encouraging display in the narrow Petrofac Cup defeat to Rangers and Mark Burchill made two changes to the side from that game as Scott Pittman and Jordyn Sheerin came in for Ross Millen and Liam Buchanan.
It was the Lions who made the more encouraging start and forced an early half-chance when Jordan White bundled an effort wide. Morgyn Neill also had a half-chance a minute later with a volley from the edge of the box which rolled wide.
The game descended into a midfield battle for a spell before Queens forced their first chance on 24 minutes when Alex Harris whipped in a low cross which Dale Hilson flicked goalwards but Marc McCallum was in the right place to save with his chest. It was only a temporary reprieve for the Lions, though, as the home side broke the deadlock with their next attack as Jordan Marshall crossed for Hilson to sidefoot beyond the helpless McCallum for 1-0.
Queens were visibly lifted by the goal and almost went 2-0 up barely a minute later when Ryan Conroy whipped a free kick just wide of the post. Livi eventually composed themselves and Gary Glen came close with a free kick of his own on 35 minutes which Robbie Thomson had to palm clear. Jackson Longridge then teed up Sheerin but he didn’t get the contact he wanted and the chance was lost. White then almost capitalised on a slip in the Queens defence but his low shot was saved by Thomson.
Livi were finishing the half strongly and Sheerin and Glen linked up well before the big striker’s low effort was saved by Thomson to ensure Queens went in at the break in front.
Half time: Queen of the South 1-0 Livingston
Livi came out for the second half determined to pick up where they left off and were rewarded within five minutes of the restart when White flicked a free kick into the path of Pittman and he fired beyond Thomson to level the scores.
It was one way traffic now and, when a corner was only cleared as far as Longridge, his effort hit, and fell kindly for, Sheerin but he curled his shot wide. Perhaps sensing blood, Livi boss Burchill sent on top scorer Liam Buchanan in place of Sheerin soon after and, on 66 minutes, the turnaround was complete when White fed the ball wide to Glen and then got on the end of his cross to nod home and make it 2-1 to the Lions.
It was almost 3-1 four minutes later when Neill rose well to send a header goalwards but it was cleared off the line and then gathered by Thomson. Within three minutes, though, the third goal did arrive for Livi as White and Glen linked up to play in supersub Buchanan and he turned his man inside out before curling a fine effort into the net.
It should have been four on 84 minutes when White did well to intercept a back pass and find himself one on one with Thomson but he shot wide with Buchanan waiting beside him for a tap-in. All was forgiven barely a minute later when a corner was headed goalwards and Buchananpounced to nod beyond Thomson and set the seal on a splendid away win for the Lions.
Burchill ran down the clock with a couple of late changes as Ryan Currie replaced Pittman and Millen came on for Gibbons before the whistle sounded to confirm a second win in Dumfries this season and send the Lions back above Alloa into ninth place.
Full-time: Queen of the South 1-4 Livingston
Next up for Livi is a visit from third-placed Raith Rovers this coming Saturday where the Lions will look to avenge the 3-0 defeat they suffered at Stark’s Park on the opening day of the season.
Queen of the South: Thomson, Higgins, Harris (Oliver 78), Lyle, Conroy, Jacobs, Hutton, Pickard (Smith 68), Hilson (Russell 64), Hooper, Marshall
Subs not used: Kidd, Heffernan, Atkinson, Coogans
Goals: Hilson (27)
Livingston: McCallum, Longridge, Gordon, Pittman (Currie 87), Faria, White, Gallagher, Neill, Gibbons (Millen 89), Sheerin (Buchanan 64), Glen
Subs not used: Jamieson, Georgiev
Goals: Pittman (50), White (67), Buchanan (75 & 85)
Referee: Nick Walsh
Match report: Andy Crawford