Defender Jason Naismith was included in Head Coach Owen Coyle’s starting side for the first time this season with the ‘QP Cafu’ Jake Davidson moving to the substitute’s bench. Scott Williamson moved in the opposite direction as he came in for Josh McPake who joined Davidson in the list of replacements.
Skipper Simon Murray was quickly involved in the action as he looked to bore down on the home goal and it took a crunching challenge from Frankie Musonda to halt his progress.
Stephen Eze rescued his side after 3 minutes when he turned a low-ball past for a corner after Dipo Akinyemi, who scored a double when the teams met back in August, burst clear and sent a cross rolling along the Queen’s goalmouth
As the Spiders looked to clear the corner the ball landed at the feet of Paul Smith at the edge of the box with the midfielder sending a shot high over.
A piece of magic from Dom Thomas created danger at the other end with Charlie Albinson saving the wide-man’s low drive with his legs.
The hosts opened the scoring on six minutes when a long cross from Paddy Reading travelled from the left wing to the back post where a jumping Akinyemi sent a header into the far corner with Brad Young ushering the ball across the line.
On 17 minutes an equaliser almost arrived when a Thomas cross skidded off an Ayr head and landed at the feet of Murray. The striker took a touch before firing for goal however Albinson had raced from his line to make a blocking save at the expense of a corner.
The visitors earned another corner on 21 minutes when Williamson led a breakaway before seeing his 16-yard shot deflected wide.
A goal looked on as Albinson swiped at Savoury’s cross and the ball landed at Lee Kilday who drove it back across the home goal however despite being just a foot out no-one was on hand to turn the ball in.
Ayr and Akinyemi threatened again from two corners with the striker having a shot blocked at the first and then heading just wide from the second.
As the half hour mark arrived Williamson had a shot blocked and as Queen’s continued to press Savoury cut in from the left and sent a drive bouncing into the arms of Albinson.
Coyle’s side passed up their best opportunity so far to restore parity on 33 minutes when Thomas picked out an unmarked Eze with a free-kick with the defender sending his header well wide of goal.
Ayr made the most of that reprieve by notching a second goal two minutes later when a Logan Chalmers pass was flicked into the path of Akinyemi by Josh Mullin with the front-man taking his time before slotting past a grounded Ferrie.
Queen’s came close again a minute later when an Eze header was flicked on by Murray however the stand-side assistant refused to budge on his view that an Ayr boot had cleared before the ball had crossed the line.
Jack Thomson was given a glimpse of the home goal two minutes from the break and the midfielder’s effort beat Albinson however it rippled the side-netting.
There were no changes at the break from either team with Ferrie getting involved early into the restart as he raced out to smother a through pass from Ayr.
The hosts punished Queen’s for losing possession on 53 minutes with Young charging forward and slipping a pass to Akinyemi who found the net despite a brave attempt by Ferrie to save with the striker claiming his hat-trick.
The visitors refused to give up and there were loud appeals for a penalty on 55 minutes however referee Robertson was not interested in the claims of a handball.
A minute later Williamson turned and fired for goal with Albinson producing further evidence that it was not the visitor’s day by making a fine one-handed stop.
On 59 minutes Ayr grabbed a fourth when Logan Chalmers fired a cross low into the box from the left and Young stuck out a foot to turn it home from six yards.
Four became five four minutes later when Mullin broke down the right and the in-rushing Ben Dempsey nonchalantly applied a back heel finish to his low cross.
With 20 minutes left Murray was tripped 22 yards out from the home goal and substitute McPake was only inches away from pulling a goal back with a curling free-kick.
Kenny was the next replacement to try and get a goal for the visitors as he combined with Murray before having his parting shot pushed away by Albinson.
Ayr came close again when Chalmers cracked a free-kick around a defensive wall however his shot flashed inches wide.
In the closing stages Kenny tried his best to grab his first goal for the club with a header and then a shot but both attempts rose and cleared Albinson’ s goal.
Queen’s Park: Calum Ferrie, Jason Naismith (Jake Davidson 77′), Stephen Eze, Lee Kilday (Alex Bannon 63′), Tommy Robson, Grant Savoury (Josh McPake 57′), Jack Thomson, Malachi Boateng, Dom Thomas, Scott Williamson (Johnny Kenny 57′), Simon Murray. Subs not used: Louis Longridge, Lewis Moore, Jacques Heraghty (G/k), Pat Jarrett, David Boateng
Ayr United: Charlie Albinson, Jordon Houston, Paddy Reading, Frankie Musonda, Alex Kirk, Logan Chalmers (Jayden Mitchell-Lawson 80′), Paul Smith, Ben Dempsey (David Bangala 68′), Josh Mullin (Daire O’Connor 68′), Dipo Akinyemi (Mark McKenzie 74′), Brad Young (Sam Ashford 73). Subs not used: Aidan McAdams (G/k), Nick McAllister, Sean McGinty, Finn Ecreport
Referee: Don Robertson