Motherwell’s impressive run of three wins in four games came to a shuddering halt as Accies made it a hat-trick of wins over the Steelmen this season.
And while Hamilton’s win at Fir Park in August was slender, this one was emphatic with the points in the bag after the opening 30 minutes.
It was obvious that Brian Rice’s men have the measure of the Fir Park side and Bruce Anderson’s goal after seven minutes gave them the advantage.
However, the double whammy of Ross Callachan’s penalty and Stephen O’Donnell’s dismissal after 18 minutes left ‘Well facing an uphill task. That became mission impossible when Marios Ogkmpoe made it 3-0.
Second-half goals from David Mayo and a consolation from Mark O’Hara made little impression on Accies’ control of the game.
After standing by the same starting side for the three consecutive games, Graham Alexander made one change, O’Hara returning from injury with Robbie Crawford moving to the bench.
‘Well’s intentions of avenging the 3-0 drubbing at Hamilton last month were dealt an early setback when the visitors fired home the opening goal after only seven minutes.
Callachan’s pass into the box found Anderson and from 10 yards the former Aberdeen striker rifled the ball low past Liam Kelly.
The home side replied immediately but from around the same distance from goal Devante Cole’s shot was blocked by Aaron Martin.
Barry Maguire left the field for treatment to a bloody nose and with ‘Well down to 10 men Accies passed up a couple of chances.
The Scotland Under 21 man had no sooner returned to restore parity when the Steelmen were permanently reduced to 10 men.
When O’Donnell impeded Callachan’s hopeful attempts to get his head to Lee Hodson’s cross, the referee David Munro’s decision to award a penalty seemed harsh. The official then compounded ‘Well’s misery when he showed O’Donnell a red card on the basis of denying a goalscoring opportunity.
Callachan sent Kelly the wrong way from the spot but had to retake it as a disgruntled O’Donnell was still walking off the pitch. Although the ‘Well ‘keeper guessed correctly for the second attempt Callachan confidently drilled the ball home to make it 2-0.
By the half-hour mark, and with the Fir Park men still to threaten Ryan Fulton in the Hamilton goal, ‘Well found themselves 3-0 behind.
A neat exchange with Anderson at the edge of the box sent Ogkmpoe in behind Bevis Mugabi and Ricki Lamie and the Accies striker took full advantage of the opening, ramming the ball beyond Kelly and all but wrap up the points with an hour remaining.
A couple of free-kicks from Maguire finally brought Fulton into action before Christopher Long made way for on-loan Blackburn Rovers defender Tyler Magloire.
Three goals behind and a man down at the interval, Motherwell faced an almost impossible task in the second half.
And it got worse after 63 minutes when Accies extended their lead.
Scott McMann supplied the cross and substitute David Mayo, with his first touch the finish to make it 4-0.
Four minutes later, ‘Well pulled one back after Cole went down in the box and O’Hara’s fired the penalty just beyond Fulton’s right hand.
The ‘Well boss immediately made a positive change Max Johnstone replacing Mugabi.
But the home side made little impression as Accies comfortably collected another three points at ‘Well’s expense.