Motherwell’s reserve side got 2019, and Maurice Ross’ tenure, off to a winning start with a comeback derby win at Hamilton Academical.
Goals from Gaël Bigirimana, James Scott and Stuart McKinstry were the difference, as the second string recovered from Alex Penny’s early opening goal.
An experienced side saw Ross McCormack start, and he was joined by fellow first team squad members Aaron Taylor-Sinclair, Liam Donnelly, Christian Mbulu, Rohan Ferguson and Bigirimana in starting the match at New Douglas Park.
Adam Livingstone, George Newell, Jamie Semple, Dean Cornelius and Scott made up the remainder of the side.
Within four minutes, the hosts were ahead. Alex Penny found himself with a free header in the box, nodding past Ferguson to open an early advantage.
Twenty minutes later, the Steelmen were level. Bigirimana found room to get the ball into the area, and his cross-cum-shot ended up finding its way into the back of the net.
Ross’ side pushed on, and the next goal would come with 10 minutes left in the first half. Picking up the ball deep, Scott drove forward and then curled the ball into the top corner of the net.
The experience in the ranks told further as the game wore on, especially in the third goal.
McCormack, getting minutes under his belt as he builds to full fitness, rolled a quick free kick to substitute McKinstry and, with the opposition caught napping, the youngster fired home to guarantee the three points.