McBookie Super League First Division
MEADOW's memorable eight-game unbeaten run came to a disappointing end as they were downed by struggling Darvel on Wednesday night.
The visitors scored straight from kick-off through former Ayr United target man Roddy Paterson.
In 20 minutes Meadow had a good opportunity, but Danny McKay sent a 25-yard free-kick just over the bar.
Then a free-kick three minutes later a free-kick from a similar distance by Robert Boyd was saved by home goalie Shaun Newman.
Darvel doubled their advantage in 28 minutes when a free-kick from 25 yards from Sean Fitzharris was volleyed home by former Meadow man Greg Vernon from 12 yards.
At the other end a free-kick in 32 minutes by Jordan McGuire was confidently clutched by Darvel goalie David Markey.
A cross into the box by McGuire was headed away by Grant Kirkwood.
Darvel went 3-0 up in 37 minutes when Fitzharris smashed a free-kick from 22 yards low into the bottom corner of the net.
The visitors should have scored again in 42 minutes when Vernon set up Paterson to shoot over the bar from eight yards.
Meadow got off to the worst possible start in the second half as Vernon slipped a precision pass to Paterson to drill the ball home from 10 yards.
A Ben Carson free-kick from 25 yards was saved on the line by the Darvel goalie in 55 minutes.
Meadow introduced substitutes Ben Black and Con Boyle in 58 minutes to join club captain Ben Carson, who had come on at half-time.
Newman blocked an eight-yard effort from Mark Armour with his legs in 62 minutes.
Meadow created a chance two minutes later when a Carson corner kick was headed over the bar at the back post by Ryan Begley.
A free-kick from 25 yards by Boyle was easily saved by the goalie four minutes later.
The home side were unlucky in 71 minutes when a point-blank header from Graham Boyd produced an excellent stop from the visiting goalie.
Darvel were reduced to 10 men in 78 minutes when Robert Boyd was given a second yellow-card fair a foul on the edge of the box on Black and Mark McLennan netted from the spot.
Meadow were awarded a second penalty and Mark Gilmour was sent off for a second booking before McLennan converted again from 12 yards.
However Darvel easily saw the game out.
IRVINE MEADOW: Newman; McLennan, Willet, Begley, Miller, McGuire, McKay, Spemce, Boyd, Gemmell, Carnwath. Subs: Black, Carson, Boyle, McGinty, Gordon (gk).
DARVEL: Markcy; Biggar, Boyd, McCreadie, Walsh, Kirkwood, Armour, Henderson, Paterson, Vernon, Fitzharris. Subs: Davidson, Ryan, Gilmour, Findlay, McManus.