The Spiders started with the same XI that finished their recent league success at Hamilton Accies with Tommy Robson, Johnny Kenny and Simon Murray returning to the line-up after not featuring in last Sunday’s 3-2 win at Cliftonville.
Raith had a number of familiar faces in their ranks with former Queen’s players Ross Millen, Aidan Connolly and Connor McBride all kicking off the game with Jamie Gullan on the bench.
Queen’s looked to start at a fast pace and in the first minute Grant Savoury released Murray on the right and the skipper fired over a dangerous low cross however there were no takers.
Raith were no slouches either and they came within an inch of taking the lead before three minutes had been played. Kyle Connell slipped a pass to Sam Stanton at the edge of the box and the one-time Hibs man turned and sent a fierce shot curling past Calum Ferrie only to see his effort strike the inside of a post and bounce across the home goalmouth.
The Kirkcaldy men continued on the front foot and a cross fizzed into the Queen’s box with the hosts grateful to a flicked header from Lee Kilday that saw the ball go out for a throw-in on the other side.
Stanton danced his way towards Ferrie’s goal on 12 minutes and appeared to lose his footing before he shot and when he recovered and fired for goal, he found his pathway blocked.
It was Dom Thomas’ time to show some fancy footwork three minutes later as he looked to test Jamie MacDonald in the visitors goal after a darting run but like Stanton he was crowded out.
Savoury was released by Jack Thomson shortly afterwards with the striker earning a corner when his drive was deflected over.
On 21 minutes Eze came within inches of his first goal for the club when he rose and met a Savoury corner only to see his header flash less than a foot wide.
Midway through the half a promising break for Queen’s was halted by referee Irvine after Raith’s Scott Brown looked to have suffered a head knock. The visiting skipper was quickly back on his feet and after play resumed, Ferrie had to carefully watch a cross as he looked to sneak in at his back post.
MacDonald was called back into action just before the half-hour mark as he smothered a low Murray shot with Brown firing wide of the home goal in the following minute.
Thomas and Murray combined to tee up Savoury 20 yards out 12 minutes from the break and his low drive looked to have the beating of MacDonald however it flashed past the wrong side of a post.
On 42 minutes a fine flowing passing move from the visitors that started on the right wing resulted in Liam Dick being released on the other flank and his dinked cross to the back post was asking to be put in however Malachi Boateng arrived on time to head clear.
Just before the break Savoury curled in one of his trade-mark 20-yard free kicks and just when the ball looked set to nestle in the top corner MacDonald leapt up high to produce a fine one-handed save.
Early into the restart Raith broke, after it looked like Kenny had been fouled, and Connell was given a glimpse of goal but thankfully Ferrie dived down to save.
Eze won another header from a Savoury corner however the ball sailed harmlessly over.
On 53 minutes Ferrie leapt to his left to produce a fine stop to keep out a curling Connell effort that looked destined for the far corner.
The deadlock was broken six minutes later and Eze got his goal. Dom Thomas whipped over a corner from the right and Eze was perfectly placed to nod home from close range with the towering expectant father placing the ball under his jersey as part of his celebrations
Connolly tried his luck from long distance with a free-kick just after the hour mark with Ferrie able to watch it clear his bar by some distance.
Queen’s came close from a corner again on 67 minutes with this time Savoury crossing from the left and Kilday heading against the woodwork.
Five minutes later Jake Davidson charged forward on the right, in Jake Davidson style, however his shot failed to find the target.
With 15 minutes to go the Spiders survived a scare as Stanton ran clear on the right with the sliding Connell just an inch away from turning in his low cross.
Brown sent a shot flashing wide of Ferrie’s goal and Quinn Coulson saw an effort deflected over before Thomas forced MacDonald into a super stop with a drive from 10 yards.
Savoury twisted and turned with two minutes left before sending a shot sliding past MacDonald’s goal.
In injury time Raith thought they had equalised twice, however goalline clearances and the bar denied them. A header from Millen looped over Ferrie however Savoury nodded off the line and when Connor O’Riordan sent another header goalward Kilday was able to clear that one via the bar.
Queen’s Park: Calum Ferrie, Jake Davidson, Lee Kilday, Stephen Eze, Tommy Robson, Grant Savoury (Alex Bannon 90+2′), Jack Thomson, Malachi Boateng, Dom Thomas, Johnny Kenny (Joshua McPake 64′), Simon Murray (Scott Williamson 75′). Subs not used: Jason Naismith, Louis Longridge, Lewis Moore, Jacques Heraghty (G/k), , Pat Jarrett, David Boateng
Raith Rovers: Jamie MacDonald, Liam Dick, Ross Millen, Ryan Nolan (Quinn Coulson 75′), Aidan Connolly (Ross Matthews 64’), Connor McBride (Brad Spencer 56′), Connor O’Riordan, Sam Stanton, Kyle Connell, Scott Brown, Dylan Easton. Subs not used: Jamie Gullan, Kieran Ngwenya, Robbie Thomson (G/k), Adam Masson.
Referee: Grant Irvine