Ross County ease to win over Motherwell
Ross County got back to winning ways in the Scottish Premiership with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Motherwell at Global Energy Stadium.
Craig Curran gave County the lead midway through the first half with an emphatic finish after good work by Martin Woods.
The home side then dominated the second period and after Tony Dingwall doubled the lead in the 69th minute, Liam Boyce added a third goal in stoppage time from the penalty spot.
The visitors threatened in the eighth minute when Jake Taylor sent over a ball to the far post but Richard Foster headed behind for a corner before Lionel Ainsworth could pounce.
Well appealed in vain for a penalty in the 18th minute. The visitors won the ball back in the middle of the park and after Scott McDonald spread the ball out to Ainsworth he crossed into the box, but Marcus Fraser got there before Louis Moult and the chance was lost.
Moult claimed he was fouled but referee Graham Chambers saw nothing amiss.
But it was County who took the lead in the 22nd minute. After a good run and shot from Dingwall was blocked in front of goal, the ball broke to Martin Woods on the left. His cross was controlled by Curran 10 yards out and he hooked the ball high into the net.
The visitors tried to respond and a Marvin Johnson cross into the box found Moult but his header was too weak to bother Gary Woods in the County goal.
Ainsworth was not far away with a low drive which ended up in the side netting but County regained the initiative and most of the action was in the Motherwell half until the break.
County came close to a second goal in the last minute of the half when a cross from Jonathan Franks was just missed by Boyce.
There were corners at either end right at the start of the second half but both came to nothing.
Moult, who looked to be Well's biggest threat up front, just failed to connect with a Stephen Pearson cross in the 57th minute.
At the other end Dingwall cut in from the right and fired a long-range shot which flew high and wide.
Boyce was then only inches away from connecting with a Foster lob into the box as County went for a second goal.
Well's best chance of the half came in the 65th minute when Johnson picked out substitute Theo Robinson in the box but his attempt was well saved by Gary Woods.
But County got the goal they were searching for in the 69th minute. Boyce kept the ball in play and Martin Woods passed it on for Dingwall, who jinked into the box and rounded Connor Ripley to slot the ball into the empty net.
Liam Grimshaw forced a save from Gary Woods in the final minute but County added a third in the second minute of stoppage time when Boyce was taken down in the box by Kieran Kennedy.
Boyce took the kick himself and blasted the ball straight down the middle past Ripley.