Lewis Toshney hailed a ‘massive three points’ as Raith Rovers came from behind to defeat Hibs and claim their first win over a top-three side this season.
The sides were level at half-time after Anthony Stokes’ opener was cancelled out by Toshney’s equaliser, before Mark Stewart’s 11th goal of the season early in the second half clinched victory for Rovers.
Toshney has featured in several positions for the Kirkcaldy men this season but even he was surprised to find himself in the centre-forward area to score the crucial equaliser.
“I’ve been given a midfield role so I’ve been getting forward a lot more in recent games,” he said.
“Mango (Craig Barr) saw the run that I’ve made and thankfully it’s ricocheted off a defender and I’ve just managed to probably slide-tackle it in.
“I’ll take it and it’s a great result for the boys. We really dug in.”
Toshney was partnered alongside Iain Davidson in midfield a central defensive partnership at times this season in a ploy to stifle Hibs’ attacking threat.
“When we went behind the boys never let the heads go down because we knew we were still in the game,” he said.
The match was moved to a 5.15pm kick-off to accommodate BBC Alba, which seemed to affect the turn-out as just 2,386 spectators watched an entertaining spectacle.
The visitors were looking to end a run of three straight league defeats and they looked on course when Stokes fired them into a 25th minute lead. A poorly defended corner kick saw Davidson’s weak headed clearance go to the on-loan Celtic striker, who fired low through a crowd from the edge of the box.
Raith responded on 37 minutes when Barr launched a ball towards the Hibs box that found Toshney in space, and he forced his way between defenders before sliding a shot low into the bottom corner beyond Marc Oxley.
Rovers started the second half on the front foot and after Ryan Hardie went close when his cut-back was deflected on to the outside of the post, Rovers took the lead from the resultant corner.
Louis Longridge’s delivery was flicked on by Barr to the back post where Stewart outjumped his marker to nod the ball over the line.
Hibs should have levelled five minutes later when Cummings was presented with a tap-in at the back post but somehow managed to hit the underside of the bar from two yards.
Raith held on through five minutes of injury time to claim a win that keeps them seven points clear in the race for fourth place.
Boss Ray McKinnon said: “They threw everything at us in the last 15 minutes but the boys stood up to it and I think it’s a deserved victory.”