Raith Rovers manager John Hughes believes a first victory in 18 matches can be the launchpad for the club to make a strong finish in the Championship.
The Stark’s Park outfit brought their agonising wait for a rare win to an end in Wednesday’s hard-fought 2-0 success over basement side St Mirren.
Hughes will take charge of his fifth game when Rovers, who are now nine points clear of the Buddies, travel to Dumbarton this afternoon and the former Hibs and Inverness boss hopes his players now have the bit between their teeth.
He said: “It had been a long time coming but they deserved a break. There was plenty of trepidation in their play but there was solidness, a will to win – we just needed that wee break and we probably got it.
“They need that, they’re a good bunch of boys. That win should give us the benchmark to keep going.
“It’s only one game and I don’t get up about it and I don’t get down about it but it was a six pointer and we got the three points.
“Confidence is a massive thing in football and they can take a lot of confidence from that result against St Mirren.
“If we can keep playing with that spirit and those energy levels then we’ll always be in it.”
Another goalkeeper crisis was averted on Wednesday evening when Pavol Penksa put pen to paper on a deal until the end of the season just six hours before kick-off.
Forward Ryan Stevenson, who announced his shock retirement from the professional ranks on Thursday, was forced to go in goals for the recent defeat to Ayr United after the club failed to find a new shot-stopper in time to cover for the injured Kevin Cuthbert, Conor Brennan and Aaron Lennox.
Hughes praised chief executive Eric Drysdale for helping to make the Penksa deal happen after insisting that he comes in for unfair criticism.
Hughes added: “I have to give a special mention to Eric, he gets battered from pillar to post at this club from the supporters.
“The work he does is invaluable and he had been working solid for fives days now to get the keeper in. He never gets down but it’s guys like him and his enthusiasm that you want to try and get success for the club because he is Mr Raith Rovers.”