Boss Jim McInally insists Peterhead can reach the Betfred Cup knockout stages after their penalty shoot-out win over Inverness Caley Thistle.
The Blue Toon triumphed 11-10 on spot-kicks, with goalie Greg Fleming hitting the winner, after a 0-0 draw at Balmoor last night.
The draw and shoot-out win earns the Buchan side two points and means they have five points from two Group D matches.
Away games against Dundee and Raith Rovers follow for McInally’s men as they look to secure the points to finish top of the pile, or as one of the four best second-placed sides, which would see them progress to the last 16.
After the thrilling win against Championship opposition, McInally said: “It was some standard of penalties. I don’t know if the rule change makes it tougher but the goalies didn’t get near many.
“Greg saved one and it spins back in – you’ve seen everything when that happens.
“It’s a great two points for us. Can we qualify? You never know. We’ve got Dundee at Dens Park which everyone expects us to lose.
“But we can cause teams problems and we’ve got Raith Rovers in the last game so if we win that, eight points could take us through.
“We’ve already exceeded expectations so we’ll have a go and see if we can get through.”
In a thoroughly entertaining encounter, Peterhead took the game to Inverness, particularly in the second half.
McInally added: “Sometimes you go into a game with a plan in your head of how you want things to go and you think it’s not going to happen.
“But it went as a dream. We knew we would sit in during the first half and play with discipline.
“We played to stay in the game and in the second half I thought it was better because I thought we were pushing on trying to win it.
“Although Greg Fleming did make a good save from Jordan White, their goalkeeper had a right good night. At the end we were pushing on to win it when they were hanging on a bit.”
Caley could have been reduced to 10 men on the half hour when Jamie McCart appeared to haul down Aidan Smith – who was through on goal – but referee Steven Reid took no action.
The Blue Toon started the second half well, with Scott Brown lashing over and then teeing up Jamie Stevenson but his low strike was repelled by goalie Mark Ridgers at the near post.
In the 53rd minute Inverness should have taken the lead when Tom Walsh’s floated cross from the right found half-time sub James Vincent completely free, but he headed against the left post from three yards.
At the other end, Smith turned away from Coll Donaldson and forced a fine save from Ridgers with a rasping 12-yard effort.
Ridgers was then at full stretch to tip away Scott Brown’s drive from the edge of the box and he also clawed Mick Dunlop’s bullet header from a Jamie Stevenson corner over the bar.
From the resultant corner a Dunlop shot from 15 yards hit the bar and at the other end, Fleming brilliantly parried away Jordan White’s header from Walsh’s left-wing centre.
In the closing stages neither side could muster a winner, but David Carson could have been sent off for hauling Smith down when he was in behind.
In the penalty shoot-out which followed, all 20 outfield players scored before Ridgers hit the right post and Fleming slammed home his left-footed spot-kick to win Peterhead an extra point.