Motherwell made it three Betfred Cup wins out of three on Tuesday night when they defeated Dumbarton 2-0 at the C and G Systems Stadium.
The first good scoring chance came when young ’Well striker James Scott produced a looping header at goal following Liam Grimshaw’s cross from the right, but home keeper Jordan Pettigrew tipped the ball over.
There was a heart stopping moment for the hosts on 26 minutes when their number 16 Mati Zata sent a ferocious volley not far wide of his own right hand post after a Polworth corner for Motherwell.
Allan Campbell then just failed to get on the end of a Scott cross from the right.
The Steelmen thought they had broken the deadlock on 37 minutes when Jermaine Hylton netted a shot after a Gallagher knockdown, but the ‘goal’ was disallowed for offside.
Motherwell finally hit the front on 41 minutes when Christian Ilic impressively swept the ball home with his left foot after a brilliant initial Polworth drive had been blocked by Pettigrew.
Within three minutes it was almost 2-0 when Hylton cracked a long range shot off the left post.
Christopher Long – making his first appearance since being concussed in the first few seconds in the group opener at Queen of the South – came on as a second half substitute and had a great chance to score on 64 minutes.
He was played through by Polworth but his touch was too heavy.
The game was effectively ended as a contest on 75 minutes when experienced centre back Peter Hartley – making his first competitive appearance of the season – headed in Polworth’s corner from the right.
It was almost 3-0 soon afterwards when Richard Tait hit the left post with a shot from distance.
Some late skill by Hylton put him through on goal twice but he shot off target on each occasion.
Group leaders Motherwell round off the section with a home game against Annan Athletic this Saturday.
Motherwell: Gillespie, Tait, Gallagher, Ilic, Grimshaw, Hartley, Campbell, Maguire, Scott, Hylton, Polworth.
Referee: Colin Steven