Jamie MacDonald last night explained how adrenalin helped him overcome tiredness as he helped Falkirk reach the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup just hours after welcoming his baby son into the world.

The goalkeeper's wife, Roxzannah, went into labour on Thursday, putting his participation in Friday night's quarter-final tie with Queen of the South in serious doubt. However, little Noah, MacDonald's second child, arrived at 2.10am on the morning of the match, and the 28-year-old, who had to deal with similar pre-match excitement when his daughter was born on the eve of former club Hearts' Europa League tie at home to Liverpool in 2012, was able to squeeze in some sleep before producing an assured display in the 1-0 victory at Palmerston.

"It was a tiring day but it was great," he said. "Noah was born at 2.10am on the morning of the game and then I went out and made it to a Scottish Cup semi-final at night, what a day. He was due nine days earlier, so it was getting to the stage where I thought I would have to miss Friday's game.

"I phoned the gaffer at 10pm the night before saying there was a chance I wouldn't make it because my wife was still in labour but thankfully he arrived in the early hours of the morning. I managed to go home and get four hours' sleep from 5am til nine, then went to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary to bring them home. Then it was straight on to the team bus. I tried to get an hour on the bus on the way down to Dumfries which wasn't the best but it was better than nothing.

"It was the same scenario as when my daughter Summer was born. I was touch and go to miss the Liverpool match but she arrived the day before and I was able to play. Roxzannah certainly likes to keep me on my toes and deliver just before the game. I've got two kids and they've both nearly caused me to miss big games but the adrenalin certainly gives you a bit of a kick-start."

Falkirk had a slow start to the season but Peter Houston's on-form team, joint-fourth with Queens in the Championship, are now in the hunt for Scottish Cup glory and promotion to the Premiership through the play-offs. "The manager said before the game that if we won and kept our form in the league, it could be a fantastic season for us," said MacDonald. "We've now got the chance to get to a Scottish Cup final and make the play-offs. The play-offs was our target at the beginning of the season and it looks like our battle with Queens for fourth place is going to go right to the end of the season. You could see on Friday night that there's very little between the teams and the league table shows that.

"We've only lost one in 16 and we're unbeaten in ten - if it wasn't for a few draws that should have been wins we'd be in an even better position. You can see the confidence in our team. At the beginning of the season we probably didn't have that. We've got real momentum now."

Falkirk are likely to be the lowest-ranked team in the semis, but MacDonald, who won the cup with Hearts in 2012 and was runner-up with Queens in 2008 and will savour the meeting with Hibs more than anyone, insists they should not be written off. "You never know," he said. "It would be fantastic if we could win it, but there's still a long way to go yet. We've got a chance though. On our day, I think we could give any team left in the competition a game."

The only fly in the ointment for buoyant Falkirk at present is the sad news that is that midfielder Owain Tudur Jones has been forced to retire, aged 30. "It's a shame for big Jonesy," said MacDonald. "He's obviously had a history of knee problems and he's been advised to quit. He's a great big guy and I wish him all the best. Unfortunately injuries are part and parcel of football, but hopefully the big man gets something sorted out for his future career."