MAJOR silverware success was celebrated by Ayr United Reserves on Sunday, write Karen Malcolm and Stewart McConnell

They lifted the Reserve Challenge Cup, defeating Livingston 3-0 at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

Both teams were unbeaten in their groups to reach the final with Ayr scoring 18 goals in the process and Livingston nine.

Ayr came close in two minutes when Finn Ecrepont played a long ball to Mark McKenzie who drove towards goal, but his shot was cleared for a corner. In 25 minutes Ayr goalie Ellis Hare-Reid made a stunning save when he tipped Hakeen Odoffin’s header over the bar. In 51 minutes Ayr broke the deadlock when Declan McDaid fired a 25-yard drive into the top right hand corner. Ayr extended their lead in 55 minutes when a Mark McKenzie shot was saved by Maley but the ball rebounded to Luke McCowan who netted. Six minutes later, McDaid drove down the righ past the Livingston defence, and fired the ball home from a tight angle six yards out. In 80 minutes, Livingston were awarded a penalty after Rafa De Vita was taken down in the box. Jack Hamilton’s effort hit off the underside of the crossbar failed to cross the line, and was cleared by the Ayr defence.

Boss Ian McCall said: “It was a great win when you consider we only had Declan McDaid and Mark Kerr from our first team in the squad. We have talented young players.”

Meanwhile United face Falkirk away in a live TV match on Friday. Midfielder Robbie Crawford said: “Falkirk are unbeaten in 2019 so it’s going to be difficult.

“We were unlucky not to take anything from the Ross County game. But we are still in with a chance of the league.

“It was a terrific effort against Ross County and we were unlucky. The Falkirk game won’t be easy but to stay in touch at the top we look to win.”

Alan Forrest may return from injury.