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We've gone from dross to gloss County from dross to; We'll keep pressure on to beat drop.

Byline: Alasdair Fraser

Ross County manager Jim McIntyre insists his side's winning streak is down to self-belief.

The Dingwall men bagged their fourth win in a month - taking them two points above Motherwell and three ahead of St Mirren.

e turnaround comes just a month after County were plunged six points adrift at the bottom after 12 games without a win.

McIntrye said: "e one thing we tried to keep instilling in the players was belief. We did think there was a group there capable of winning matches.

Teams Teams Ross County Brown 6 Fraser 6 Boyd 8 P. Quinn 7 Reckord 8 Gardyne 8 Irvine 6 "Four in a row is really fantastic, we're pleased with that, but it's back to the grind on Monday. We've a tough game at Hamilton now."

CRAIG CURRAN's winner in Dingwall equalled the club's record set two years ago in their debut top-ight season.

Woods 7 De Vita 7 Curran 8 Boyce 7 Subs: Carey 1 Kiss 3 Jervis 4 Partick Th Gallacher 6 O'Donnell 6 Frans 7 Balatoni 7 Keenan 6 Osman 6 Bannigan 7 Lawless 6 Craigen 6 Higginbotham. 7 Taylor 6 Subs: Stevenson 4 Doolan 5 Wilson 4 It was no mean feat given the Jags matched County in every department for grit and endeavour in a battle that brought a red card for Kallum Higginbotham.

Tough conditions and the obvious high stakes conspired to snu' out most of the pretty stu' as the Maryhill men were dragged to within just four points of County.

McIntyre admitted: "We were fully aware istle would come here trying to do to us what we did to them two weeks ago. We know there were a lot of hard battles out there.

"We're delighted with the response of the players. We had to dig in, we had to scrap and we showed another side to us today. ere are things we can do better but we showed a defensive side today - winning headers, blocks , bodies on the line - and that was really great to see."

A sure measure of Ross County's resurgent form had come in McIntyre's naming of an identical side for the fourth game running.

istle, having broken a run of ve defeats with victory over Dundee United, made one alteration with injured Christie Elliot making way for Dale Keenan at left-back.

No quarter was given in a scrappy start but the Jags were rst to threaten seriously after nine minutes.

James Craigen collected the ball eagerly in midfield, drove on, and released Lyle Taylor with an angled pass into his stride at the edge of the penalty box. e striker's wild mis-hi t nearly took out a Jail End regular.

e ball was ricocheting around the park like a pinball, the fast and frantic football holding little nesse but plenty of grit and desire.

e home breakthrough was decen t enough after 33 minutes, sparked by some great skill from Ra'aele De Vita on the left.

e Italian wide man darted inside with great poise on the ball and crossed to nd Liam Boyce chesting down in the box.

e Irish striker's stretched leg was enough to force a parry from keeper Paul Gallacher and the rebound bounced high to Craig Curran.

Even then, the Liverpudlian frontman had work to do to get some power man on the ball but placed a lovely header into the corner of the net from eight yards.

After the break there was little in i t, Michael Gardyne sni-ng out a chance but drilling low and wide, before istle threw on frontman Kris Doolan just 10 minutes into the second period.

But Alan Archibald's side were really up against it just before the hour as they were reduced to 10 men.

The excellent Higginbotham clattered through the back of Gardyne without obvious malice and was given a straight red. It was a tough call on Partick but looked correct under the letter of the law.

There was further danger for the away side soon after with Keenan's foul on the Gardyne on the r i g h t bringing a Woods freekick.

The delivery caused a scramble in the Jags penalty area but danger ebbed as Paul Quinn's effort spun off his own player and deected wide. Both teams found themselves against the ropes, making frantic diving blocks in the nal minutes with Partick in particular pushing and threatening as they scrapped for away back right to the death.

It was bedlam in the away box too, as sub Jake Jervis nodded down for fellow replacement Filip Kiss in the box- but Gallacher made a block.

County should have punished a blunder at the end from Thistle keeper Gallacher when Kiss took the ball from his feet and went past the Jags No.1 on the far right, shooting just beyond the far post.

The whistle sounded after three minutes' stoppage time - and County were soon celebrating securing their fourth win in a row.

Tweet a treat "Here we goooo, 4 in a row!" "Here we goooo, 4 in a row!" Ross County wide man Ross County wide man Raffaele De Vita celebrates Raffaele De Vita celebrates another victory for his another victory for his Staggies Staggies We'll fight to stay up Alan Archibald admits Partick Thistle need to be more consistent if they are to stay out of the relegation mix.

The Jags slipped deeper into the mire on a day when they had the chance to put 10 points between them and Ross County with a win.

But now with just four points separating the Maryhill men and the Staggies, the reality is beginning to hit home.

Archibald said: "I said two weeks ago when we lost to County we were in the relegation mix. Unless you start picking up consistent results you are going to be.

"We have two home games that are vital to see where our season goes.

"There were positives to from the game. But you're in a battle at the of the table, the first can be vital."

CAPTION(S):

PRESSURE County's Curran kept piling it on to net the winner

RESULT Craig Curren bagged County's goal; Higginbotham gets red card
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Mar 8, 2015
Words:1034
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