The Spiders, who were wearing their new Black and White kit for the first time, handed Callan McKenna his first taste of senior football and as well as giving the 16-year-old goalkeeper his first start new Head Coach Robin Veldman gave debuts to Will Tizzard, Jack Spong, Barry Hepburn, Jack Turner and Ruari Paton for the trip to Fife.
Jack Thomson was handed the captain’s armband against the hosts who included former Spiders Alan Trouten and Gregor Nicol in their line-up as well as Pat Slattery who had a loan period at Hampden from Queen of the South on the bench.
Skipper Thomson took kick-off and Queen’s setting out their intention to play a possession game instantly with a long succession of passes before East Fife cut out their attacking intent.
McKenna was involved after three minutes when he moved off his goalline to stretch and hold a left-wing cross from Jack Healy.
Six minutes later Thomson was brought down 30 yards out from the home goal with Dom Thomas flighting in a dead ball that was causing danger until Tizzard was crowded out.
On 11 minutes Hepburn scampered down the left to win the first corner of the afternoon however no danger threatened.
Winger Hepburn had a chance to open the scoring within a minute as Louis Longridge and Thomas combined on the right and after Jonathan Page had headed Thomas’ cross off the line Hepburn hooked the loose ball over from six yards.
Hepburn threatened again from the left midway through the opening half with his low drive touched for a corner by Allan Fleming with the flag-kick fizzing across the East Fife box with no takers.
On 25 minutes Thomas robbed Brian Easton of possession and bore down on goal with Fleming doing well to beat away his powerful drive with Thomson sending the rebound wide.
Queen’s created another good opening on 32 minutes when a pass from Charlie Fox dropped behind the Fifers’ rear-guard and Turner ran clear with the midfielder chipping over Fleming and then watching in agony as the ball dropped wide.
Right on half time another chance for the Spiders was not converted as Thomas threaded a pass to Thomson on the left flank and his chipped cross was met by Turner with his strong header rising and clearing the bar.
Trouten was yellow carded seconds into the restart with his team-mate Liam Newton looking fortunate to escape the same fate on 48 minutes when his body-check ended a charge forward by Hepburn.
Thomson had the visitors’ first chance of the second half when he cut across the 18-yard box before sending in a low drive that Fleming dived to save.
A handball from Page saw Queen’s earn a free kick on 55 minutes with Thomas and Thomson combining to force a corner that Tizzard nodded goalward only to be denied by a header off the line.
East Fife raced to the other and McKenna did well to spread himself and push away a Healy shot at the expense of a corner.
On the hour mark Thomson picked up a knock near the half-way line and despite a lengthy period of treatment he was unable to continue and Paddy Jarrett come on as his replacement with Longridge taking over the armband.
A drive forward by Charlie Fox and a dash by Hepburn saw Queen’s secure another corner on 65 minutes that Paton headed just over when the ball was recycled after initially being cleared.
A goal looked to have arrived on 70 minutes when Longridge slipped a pass to Jarrett who swept a shot past Fleming only for the ball to clear the far post as well.
Another opening came and went three minutes later as Fox and Turner combined again with Paton just unable to get a boot on the midfielder’s driven cross.
East Fife’s Sean Docherty was cautioned for a foul on Thomas on 76 minutes and after it was cleared McKenna raced out to goal to clear as Brogan Walls threatened to run free.
Fox became the third captain of the day as Longridge was withdrawn as part of a double substitution with Liam MacLeish coming on to make his senior debut. Queen’s quickly got back into the groove as Hepburn and then substitute Alex Bannon went close.
Thomas looked to have created what would have been a winner with three minutes left as he picked out Hepburn at the back post however his fellow wide-man’s header flashed inches wide.
In injury time it looked like East Fife would snatch a dramatic winner when Walls was left unmarked at the back post however Turner popped up with a timely challenge to clear and force the penalty shoot-out.
Thomas hit home the first penalty of the shoot-out with Walls doing the same for the Fifers before Scott Shepherd fired them in front after Spong’s effort was saved. Turner made it 2-2 before Healy edged the Fifers into the lead again.
Substitute Liam McLeish was denied and that allowed Trouten, who scored from the spot in a famous Queen’s Park penalty kick success over Aberdeen in 2006 before McKenna was born, to roll home the winner.
Queen’s Park – Callan McKenna, Tommy Robson (Liam McLeish 83), Charlie Fox, Jack Spong, Barry Hepburn, Jack Thomson (Patrick Jarrett 62), Ruari Paton, Dom Thomas, Will Tizzard, Jack Turner, Louis Longridge (Alex Bannon 83).
Unused substitutes – Calum Ferrie (G/k), Aaron Healy, Cameron Bruce, Rocco Hickey-Fugaccia, Lennon Connolly, Lewis Reid.
East Fife – Allan Fleming, Liam Newtown, Kieran Millar (Connor McManus 78), Jonathan Page, Scott Shepherd, Alan Trouten, Jack Healy, Gregor Nicol (Ryan Shiavone 78), Sean Docherty, Brogan Walls, Brian Easton.
Unused substitutes – Recce Beveridge, Pat Slattery, Nathan Austin, Ross Philip, Mickey Cunningham, Jacob Comerford.
Referee: Lloyd Wilson.
Shots on Target 1
Fouls committed 8
Shots on Target 1
Fouls committed 13