Saints entertained Dunfermline at McDiarmid Park on Saturday afternoon for what was the first home game of the new season and Alan Main's 250th appearance for the Saints. New signing Peter MacDonald went straight into the squad and Paddy Connolly started the game partnering Keigan Parker in attack.
Saints enjoyed the majority of the possession in the first half although it was Dunfermline who went into the break leading by a goal to nil. The goal arrived after just seven minutes courtesy of Barry Nicholson who volleyed home from 15 yards after the cross from the right wing flew over Paul Kane’s head leaving Nicholson free to score.
Saints may have scored three minutes later although Paul Hartley’s free kick from 20 yards was held by Ruitenbeek on the line. Paddy Connolly tried his luck with a long range curling shot but this went wide of the left hand post and Darren Dods saw his header punched off the line by Ruitenbeek from a Lovenkrands corner kick. Dunfermline’s only other shot at goal came from Crawford late in the half although this did not trouble Alan Main.
Dunfermline scored their second goal ten minutes into the second period - some good build up play in midfield ended with Nicholls unleashing an unstoppable drive from 18 yards which flew past Alan Main into his left corner. Saints made the changes immediately with Darren Jackson and Peter MacDonald coming on to replace Parker and Kane.
Dunfermline should have been 3-0 up when Crawford went through one on one with Main although the keeper made a great save with his legs. Saints started to exert pressure in search of a goal and Kemble came closest with a 20 yard drive which rattled the crossbar. John Paul McBride was next to try and break the duck but his shot was tipped over the bar by Ruitenbeek and from the resulting corner MacDonald hooked his volley over the bar. Saints had a late chance through a Fotheringham free kick and Nicholson shot straight at Alan Main for Dunfermline but the game ended 2-0 to the Pars.
SAINTS: Main, Murray, Dods, Kemble, Forsyth, Hartley, Kane (Jackson 57), McBride, Lovenkrands, Connolly (Fotheringham 75), Parker (MacDonald 57).
SUBS NOT USED: Cuthbert, McCluskey.
DUNFERMLINE ATHLETIC: Ruitenbeek, Thomson, Skinner, Skerla, McGroarty, Mason, Nicholls, Bullen, Nicholson, De Gier, Crawford.
REF: Kevin Toner
MoM: Grant Murray