Sligo Rovers are in the hat for Tuesday’s Irn-Bru Scottish Cup Third Round draw after they overcame a horror start to progress past Livingston Colts at the Showgrounds.
Matthew Knox had given Derek McWilliams’ side the lead in the opening 90 seconds. But a resolute Rovers recovered to win the tie courtesy of Mikey Drennan’s hat-trick and a smart finish from David Cawley.
The Scottish side hit the lead in sensational fashion with less than two minutes played. Knox making the most of the space afforded to him, giving Rovers goalkeeper Mitchell Beeney no chance with a rifled effort into the top corner.
Sligo were jolted from their slumber and levelled the game just short of the quarter hour. Carlo Pignatiello’s poor touch allowing Drennan to volley past Jordan Pettigrew, after both Cawley and Regan Donelon had forced two good stops out of the Colts’ net minder.
The SSE Airtricity League Premier Division side continued to have the better of it for the remainder.
Kris Twardek’s cross from the right evaded Lee Lynch’s stretch, but not Drennan’s, who was on hand to head home at the back stick.
Cawley made it three on the hour. Wixted threading the ball through to the Ballina man who calmly lifted the ball over the oncoming Pettigrew.
While Drennan had his hat-trick four minutes from time with a neat finish past Pettigrew from the angle.
Sligo Rovers: Mitchell Beeney; Jack Keaney, John Mahon, Patrick McClean, Regan Donelon; David Cawley, Rhys McCabe (Lewis Morrison 69); Kris Twardek (Niall Morahan 84), Lee Lynch, Adam Wixted (Liam Kerrigan 76); Mikey Drennan.
Livingston Colts: Jordan Pettigrew; Carlo Pignatiello, Levi Kinchant, Hamish Thomson, Cameron Clark; Adam Watson (Sean McManus 81), Cameron Blues, Reece Rintoul (Jason Gregory 66), Craig Henderson (Alberto Vezza 66); Matthew Knox, Jack Hamilton.
Referee: Lee Tavinder (Northern Ireland)