Ross County fire four as Aberdeen end their season with a heavy Pittodrie defeat
Ross County killed the mood at Pittodrie with a thumping 4-0 win over Aberdeen on the final day of the Ladbrokes Premiership season.
There had been a last-day-of-school feel as league runners-up Aberdeen waved goodbye to veteran midfielder Barry Robson, but County won comprehensively thanks to goals from Brian Graham, Alex Schalk, Liam Boyce and Martin Woods.
The Dons had started brightly, with Kenny McLean flashing a shot wide of goal after just two minutes, following a neat interchange of passes with Jonny Hayes on the right.
Derek McInnes had handed Australian goalkeeper Aaron Lennox a debut, and he was called into action to turn away Jackson Irvine's 20-yard strike. The Dons broke up the park, and Scott Wright forced a similar save from Scott Fox in the County goal.
The deadlock was broken midway through the first half, and it was a moment Lennox will want to forget.
He raced off his line to close down Schalk, but succeeded only in bringing down the striker. The goalkeeper went into referee Willie Collum's book, and his miserly was compounded as Graham sent the resultant spot-kick high to his right.
The Staggies doubled their advantage on the stroke of half-time, as Schalk rose to send a bicycle kick into the corner after Graham had headed a right-wing corner to his team-mate.
Graham was involved again 10 minutes after the interval, as he sent a 20-yard effort narrowly wide of Lennox's right-hand post, with the goalkeeper scrambling to cover the effort.
Former Dundee United and Celtic midfielder Robson's three-year Dons career ended just shy of the hour mark, as the Aberdeen-born player was replaced by striker Joe Nuttall, part of a double change that also saw Niall McGinn make way for Cammy Smith.
And the home side should have pulled a goal back just a few minutes later, through an unlikely source.
Willo Flood, without a goal all season, saw his initial header from a Shay Logan cross saved by Fox, before putting the rebound over the crossbar when it looked easier to score.
They were duly punished, as County quickly added a third. Flood was caught in possession and the visitors surged forward, before a Woods cross was headed home at the back post by Boyce.
Woods added his own name to the scoresheet 10 minutes later, with a stunning strike from long distance which arrowed into the top corner, leaving Lennox absolutely helpless.
McLean attempted to equal Schalk's acrobatic finish with a bicycle kick of his own after Andrew Considine had nodded a Hayes corner back across goal, but the effort was almost too well struck, and flew over the bar.