There was little to separate the two sides in the opening 45 minutes, with a swirling wind not helping matters.
But as soon as Marc McNulty fired the hosts in front, there was no doubt of a home win.
Stefan Scougall and Michael Doyle both had great chances to double the advantage, but fired wide.
And it was left to impressive winger Jamal Campbell-Ryce to drill home the second goal when he hammered the ball through the keeper’s legs.
Preston nabbed a late consolation via substitute Josh Brownhill in stoppage time, but it too little, too late.