Dumbarton picked up their first win this year with a 2-1 victory over play-off chasing East Fife on Thursday.

Goals in each half from Ryan McGeever and Adam Frizzell secured a crucial three points for the Sons, although Ross Dunlop’s stoppage time consolation did set up a tense finale.

Jim Duffy’s side have struggled for goals all season, with just one in the league this side of the restart – but they could have had at least four on Thursday night as they missed a penalty and hit the crossbar amongst other opportunities.

The Sons boss was delighted that his troops were finally rewarded for their efforts during a recent hectic spell featuring six games in 13 days.

Speaking post-match, Duffy told the Reporter: “The effort the players have been putting in has been exceptional.

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons' first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

"They dug deep into their reserves of energy – they were absolutely out on their feet in the last 15 minutes, but we managed to see the game through, particularly after the disappointment of missing a penalty.

"When we’ve not been so hot on goals, that can sometimes knock the stuffing out of you – but it didn’t, and we managed to score a fantastic second goal.

"The late goal made it a bit nervy but we’re delighted to get the three points.

“We had more efforts on goal and a bit more threat, which was good, and part of that is because East Fife are coming to attack you.

"Sometimes teams will sit in and make it difficult, but the fact they are an attacking side meant the game was a little more open.

READ MORE: Duffy hails Sons' defence as free-scoring Montrose are held to a draw

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons' first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

"The effort and commitment from the players is unquestionable.

"Over the piece our desire was there in abundance, and qualities like that are sometimes undervalued.”

The 61-year-old made six changes for the tie that came just 48 hours after Tuesday’s draw with Montrose, and with a trip to Cove Rangers on the cards this Saturday; Ruaridh Langan, James Wallace, Robert Jones, Ross Forbes, Sam Wardrop and Frizzell all came into the starting eleven.

The swirling wind made set pieces awkward for both sides across the evening with early corners from Sons putting the Fifers' goal under threat in the opening minutes – and that early pressure paid off with just four minutes on the clock when Forbes’ corner was right on the head of McGeever, who powerfully found the back of the net.

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons' first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

The visitors came close through Aaron Dunsmure’s strike across goal that was just out of reach of Greig Spence, and former Dumbarton man Scott Agnew dragged a shot wide.

McGeever nearly found a second when his powerful effort from close range smashed off the bar and Wallace had a header pushed away by East Fife keeper Jordan Hart.

Midway through the second half, Dumbarton had the perfect opportunity to double their lead when Rabin Omar was fouled in the box and referee Barry Cook pointed to the spot.

Forbes stepped up and aimed for the bottom right corner, but Hart guessed correctly and pushed away the penalty.

In the minutes that followed, Omar had a strike beaten away before Sons found the second goal they were looking for.

READ MORE: Late Dons winner shatters Dumbarton's hopes of Scottish Cup upset

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons' first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

This time Forbes made amends for his miss as he poked the ball through a crowd of players and into the path of Frizzell, who burst into the box and rifled a shot into the top corner of the net.

The visitors looked for a response but Sons were defending well and looked as if they would comfortably see the game out.

But in the first minute of added time Dunlop got the final touch on an Agnew corner to halve the deficit.

Darren Young’s side pushed for an unlikely equaliser, and Sons fans would have been hiding behind their sofas as they watched on from home, but the hosts held on for the win.

Clyde’s 3-0 win over Forfar on Thursday means that Sons extend the gap over bottom-of-the-league Loons to five points.

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

Dumbarton picked up a crucial three points in a 2-1 home win over East Fife on April 8 - Sons' first win since December (Photo - Andy Scott)

Dumbarton remain in the League One relegation play-off slot, a point behind Clyde, though the Bully Wee have a game in hand.

Sons travel north to face Cove this Saturday before a rare Tuesday off – ahead of a massive clash with Clyde at Broadwood next Thursday, April 15.

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