CIVIL almost took the lead on the half hour mark when Charlie Brigain was left unmarked at the back post and Liam Robertson did well to save his powerful header.
Preston took the lead just before the interval when Mark Stewart went on a terrific run up the wing and crossed to find Sean Martin unmarked in the box, who fired home from close range.
Civil then started to apply pressure and Robertson pulled off a few superb saves to keep Civil at bay. Civil were a awarded a contentious penalty when Mark Cherrie tripped Ross Aitchison. Paul Scales stepped up and converted the spot kick. With Preston still trying to settle after the disputed penalty award Civil took the lead. A corner was played in and Brigain broke away from his marker and slotted the ball into the net. Chris Inglis then almost levelled when he picked up a loose ball on the edge of the box but his shot went over the bar.
Civil: Callan, Aird, McAleavy, Lister, Young, Mearns, Brigain, Ross-Kerr (Burns 78), Scales, O’Neill, Aitchison. Subs: Raeburn, Gay, Tansey, Burns, Wague.
Preston: Robertson, Barr, O’Hara, Cherrie, Morrison, Bennett, Stewart, Scott (Colquhoun 59), Martin, Arthur, McCormack (Inglis 31). Subs: Colquhoun, Inglis, Mullen, Pennycuik.