A TURBULENT week for Darvel ended on a high as they moved back up the Premier Division after a compelling 4-0 win over Blantyre Vics.

Suffering their first league defeat by Kilwinning Rangers last weekend (0-1) and then having to forfeit another three precious league points after Benburb withdrew from the league had questions being asked of Mick Kennedy’s troops. However, they were duly answered with a performance of control and maturity, even if their boss was not pleased with his team offering Blantyre a way back through complacency.

"It’s certainly been an interesting week but today saw us looking more like ourselves, strong defensively and showing an attacking intent which was sadly lacking in the Kilwinning game," Kennedy said.

“The desire by the guys to make up for the disappointment felt at last week’s result was evident in their training routines during the week and they came roaring out of the blocks today with a real aggression that simply blew Blantyre away.

“The opening 45 minutes was outstanding and if I could levy any criticism, it would be the slackness that crept in after the break, but this is the very real danger when a team is 3-0 ahead and comfortably in control; players take an extra touch when it’s not needed and problems then arise.

“We could have managed the game better but that said I’ve a lot more to be happier about than not.”

Darvel gave notice of what was coming by forging ahead in the opening minute with a goal of stunning simplicity, a probing move down the right flank culminating in a cross to the back post that Jordan Allan controlled before drilling home a low shot.

Suitably buoyed, the home side remained on top and their lead was doubled after 10 minutes as Alan McKenzie rose to meet an inswinging Jordan Kirkpatrick cross, burying a close range header beyond helpless Vics keeper Liam Campbell.

McKenzie came close with another headed effort before the visitors passed up a wonderful opportunity to reduce the deficit when Gavin Miller raced clear on goal only for his shot to be saved by the feet of Darvel No.1 Chris Truesdale.

Darvel netted a definitive third goal approaching half time as another back post overload saw Allan again profit from a right-wing cross to score with a well struck shot.

Goalmouth thrills became far more sporadic with Darvel seemingly happy to play possession football while absorbing Blantyre’s attacking ventures on the break.

However, there was a frenetic closing period sparked by Darvel almost conjuring up a fourth goal through a Darren Miller shot against the crossbar.

The goal was only delayed though , with substitute Aaron Black’s driven cross headed home by Cameron Eadie in 88 minutes.

There was still time for more trouble for the Lanarkshire visitors when arguably their best player on the day, full-back Dale Jones, launched himself into a wild challenge on Allan to earn a red card from referee Chris Gentiles.

Vics boss John Gibson said: “Dale has been caught by the Darvel player just moments earlier and unfortunately the red mist has come down so he’ll have to take his suspension punishment on the chin.

“In much the same way, we have to admit Darvel were the better team out there and were clinical in punishing our mistakes which started when we were caught on the hop right from the first whistle.

“They are difficult enough to play against without giving them a two-goal start but they hit us with a killer third just when I felt we were getting back into things.

“You can get away with blunders in the leagues down below but not at this level of the game and we have to learn that lesson quickly.”

League leaders Clydebank took full advantage of teams immediately around them in the standings coming unstuck to move five points clear after goals from Ciaran Mulcahy, Chris Black, Conor Lynas and Ross McPherson helped rack up a fourth consecutive victory away to Rob Roy.

Continuing to hang on to the Bankies’coat tails are Troon following an incident packed 2-2 draw against Beith which had the Seasiders looking a good bet for the spoils when leading 2-0 at the half-way stage through Jordan Morton and Ryan Stevenson goals.

Troon defender Jamie McGowan’s controversial dismissal for a second yellow card offence early in the second half altered the game and an even bigger game-changer came when team-mate Jack Sherrie was shown a red card after he gave away a penalty which Connor McGlinchey scored to halve the deficit.

A backs-to-the-wall display from the nine men kept the Mighty at bay but pressure and weight of numbers eventually told with just five minutes left as McGlinchey belted home an 18-yard free-kick equaliser.

Rutherglen Glencairn and Largs Thistle chalked up their first wins, Jackson Biggar and Drew Wingate netting as the Glens came back from 1-0 down to beat 10-man Bonnyton Thistle, while Largs similarly recovered from falling behind to a header by Cumbernauld United's Jack Harrison to romp home 4-1 at Barrfields with Scott Adam, Craig Forbes, Corey Hughes and Sean McLeod on the mark.

Carlo Monti and Tony Coutts did the damage as Kilwinning Rangers ran out 2-1 winners over Rossvale for whom Connor Bradley was on the scoresheet and it was the same outcome at Meadow Park where Hurlford United got the better of Irvine Meadow, whose only response to goals from Mick Wardrope and Chris McKnight was a consolation by Connor Boyle.

At Conference level, front-runners Port Glasgow came a cropper in losing 5-2 at home to derby rivals Greenock whose seasoned front man James Marks bagged a hat trick.

Greenock now top the table a point ahead of Neilston, who were 4-1 winners over Gartcairn through Jamie Docherty, Connor Bulger, Kieron Brophy and Cammy Haddow, while St Cadocs are up to third after veteran Mick McCann weighed in with a brace in a 5-0 hammering of Irvine Vics.

Ashfield’s feared hit-man Callum Graham was another double scorer in a 4-1 defeat of Maybole, while a Jay McInally goal along with a second-half Jamie Gray penalty helped Maryhill overcome Ardeer Thistle 2-1.

WOSFL Premier Division: Beith 2 Troon 2, Largs Thistle 4 Cumbernauld Utd 1, Darvel 4 Blantyre Vics 0, Kilwinning Rangers 2 Rossvale 1, Rutherglen Glencairn 2 Bonnyton Thistle 1, Rob Roy 0 Clydebank 4, Irvine Meadow 1 Hurlford Utd 2.

WOSFL Conference League A: Ardeer Thistle 1 Maryhill 2, Annbank Utd 3 Kello Rovers 1, Glasgow University 1 Bellshill Athletic 3, Renfrew 0 Muirkirk 0, Maybole 1 Ashfield 4.

WOSFL Conference League B: Forth Wanderers 2 Carluke Rovers 2, Vale of Leven 1 Wishaw 2, Port Glasgow 2 Greenock 5, Neilston 4 Gartcairn 1, St Cadocs 5 Irvine Vics 0, Lugar Boswell 2 Vale of Clyde 2.

WOSFL Conference League C: Lanark Utd 2 St Anthonys 1, Drumchapel Utd 3 East Kilbride Thistle 1, Kilsyth Rangers 2 Glasgow Perthshire 1, Thorniewood Utd 3 Yoker Athletic 1.