Stephen O’Donnell grabbed the winner in the 52nd minute to send Archibald’s side within three points of securing their Premiership status for another season as County suffered their first defeat in 10 games.
“We started the game really well, started on the front foot, but were disappointed with the goal we lost. It came as a bit of a shock because we’d dominated possession,” he said.
“But I was delighted with how the lads moved the ball and created a number of chances. It was frustrating as I felt we had other opportunities for our front players.
“We were up against a really good side today, one on a great run, so all credit to the lads for stopping that run. Once we got a foothold in the game, we won our individual battles and that allowed us to play.
“I thought we played more football than when we lost narrowly up here last time. We won a lot of individual battles today and County have been excellent, so that was pleasing.
“We had a couple of one-on-ones which we could have done better with, but we have to be happy – a victory is a victory at this stage in the season.”
County manager Jim McIntyre, who saw Michael Gardyne net from a tight angle in the 21st minute to put his side ahead, was frustrated to see them lose their grip on the game.
“We had a bad day at the office. Thistle thoroughly deserved the victory, there’s no question of that,” he said.
“We were disappointed with the performance – I didn’t think we had the same energy levels. Partick were better than us.”
McIntyre was critical of his keeper for the winner, adding: “We’ve got to make sure that doesn’t go in. He (Mark Brown) has got to save that.”
Looking ahead to next week’s match against Motherwell, the County boss added: “We’re obviously in a better position than Motherwell with four games left and all to play for. We’ll be ready for that, that’s for sure.
“I was slightly concerned coming into the game as we knew we had a few players carrying knocks and hadn’t done a lot of training this week. The boys have been fantastic on the run we put together. It comes to an end sometime, but we just have to remember where we were before.”