Motherwell started the season with a clinical 1-0 victory over Queen’s Park in the Premier Sports Cup group stage.
Steven Lawless’ goal in the first half was the difference against the League One side, who caused trouble but were wasteful when faced with Liam Kelly.
Youth graduate Dean Cornelius was given his first start, with Darragh O’Connor and Kaiyne Woolery also making their debuts in the first XI.
But on the 14th minute mark, Motherwell took the chance when it arrived for them.
A loose ball on the edge of the box saw Maguire react quick to drive in, skip inside and fire a ferocious effort at goal, which was parried away.
Maguire recovered the situation and backheeled to Watt, whose pass inside found the waiting Lawless.
Under pressure, he showed all the composure needed to turn his man and fire into the bottom-right corner of the net from 12 yards.
Undeterred, the hosts ploughed on and Simon Murray carved out a whole host of chances for his team which he failed to take, while Kelly had to react fast to chest away a Robson drive from distance.
The League One side ended the first half perhaps aggrieved they weren’t at least level, having broke into the Motherwell box plentiful times but proving wasteful in front of goal.
The Spiders would again look the more likely in the early exchanges of the second half.
Kelly again was at the rescue 10 minutes in. Brown’s surging run through the middle against a retreating defence saw him slip in Murray on the left.
One-on-one with the goalkeeper from 15 yards, he picked his spot but Kelly reacted brilliantly to get down low and stop the equaliser.
There was a welcome return in midfield from Liam Donnelly after almost a year out injured, while Kevin van Veen also got late minutes to make his first appearance in claret and amber.
Motherwell would threaten as the game wore on, with Maguire and Watt both seeing shots saved, while the hosts’ danger subsided near the end as Graham Alexander’s men returned to Fir Park with all three points.