Raith Rovers captain Jason Thomson has called on his team-mates to show what they are made of after losing their 15-game unbeaten league record at Stark’s Park on Saturday.
Rovers’ last league defeat came at Ibrox on March 1 but they never looked like taking anything from this game after John Baird gave Falkirk a first-half lead.
The Kirkcaldy side had plenty of possession but struggled to create chances against a stubborn Bairns defence so when Tom Taiwo added a second after the break, there was no way back for Rovers.
Thomson said: “We huffed and puffed without creating the magic to get a goal. When you’re playing like that and you switch off at the other end, it’s always going to end up in defeat.
“We wanted to build on our home form, which has been massive since around February last season, but it’s all about how we react now.
“We’re five games in so it’s not the end of the world but we need a reaction.
“The manager told us after the game that you can have all the ability but you’ve got to make sure you have that burning desire to go and do well.
“We go to Queen’s next week, who are flying, and it’s always a hard game regardless. I know we have the characters to bounce back.”
Raith were the brighter team in the early stages and should have taken the lead. Lewis Vaughan whipped a free-kick to the back post where Iain Davidson somehow headed wide with the goal gaping.
That miss proved costly as Falkirk made the breakthrough on the half-hour mark. Mark Kerr threaded a ball between the centre-halves to ex-Raith frontman John Baird and he clipped a left-foot finish beyond Connor Brennan.
With Raith failing to create any chances of note, Falkirk grabbed a second goal with 19 minutes left. Substitute John Rankin made a run from midfield before cutting the ball back for Taiwo to blast home.
Rovers continued to press, introducing three attacking subs and pushing defender Kyle Benedictus up front for the last 10 minutes, but it made little difference to their blunt forward play.
Raith boss Gary Locke admitted that his team’s lack of cutting edge cost them the match.
“It was a frustrating game,” he said.
“When they scored both their goals we were the team on top. We played OK but it was a bit flat in the forward third – we weren’t as sharp as we have been. We’ve got to lift ourselves and go again. We don’t become a bad team overnight.”
Despite the defeat, Raith remain third in the Championship table, three points ahead of the Bairns in fifth.
Meanwhile, Hibs manager Neil Lennon was happy to get the three points after seeing his side struggle to adapt to Dumbarton’s pitch before coming away with a 1-0 win.
Striker Jason Cummings scored a first-half penalty to keep Hibs at the top of the table.
Lennon admitted he was not a fan of the surface at the Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium and told HibsTV: “It was a really difficult surface to play on, slow, dry, long grass.
“If it had rained it might have suited us better, it would have been quicker but it was dry, slow, bobbly and it is very open, but you have to accept that.
“Dumbarton aren’t here to make us welcome, cut the grass and make a quick pitch for us.
“We should have been out of sight at half-time but it became a bit of a battle in the second half, but the players showed a bit of grit.”