Corinthians have claimed the first bragging rights over local rivals Galwegians with a 20-18 Connacht Senior Lleague win in Cloonacauneen on Saturday.
Galwegians, needing a win to win retain the title, will now play Sligo, who surprised Buccaneers with a 37 - 22 victory, in a title play-off.
Corinthians’ win at home is a big boost as all clubs head into the new All Ireland League in which they will again host Galwegians later in the season in division 2.
The home side twice came from behind before sealing the win late in a game in which both sides scored two tries apiece.
Wegians applied pressure from the start, using their heavier pack to dominate the early exchanges and, after mauling up the field, winger Dave Butler finished off in the corner to open the scoring.
The home side replied with a penalty from fullback Mick O’Flynn in front of posts before the Glenina outfit drove up field again and were awarded another penalty which was converted by outhalf Dave Clarke.
However some strong driving from Corinthians’ young pack earned their side a penalty, which was again converted by O’Flynn and, just before the break fine work from the back row resulted in outhalf Conor Murphy grabbing their first try, which O’Flynn converted to give his side a 13 - 8 half-time lead.
Galwegians upped their game after the interval, and a great drive by the heavier eight forced a penalty try under the posts, with Clarke adding the extras. When Clarke converted another penalty with 10 minutes remaining, Wegians enjoyed an 18 - 13 lead.
However, led by captain Fionn Gormley, Corinthians grabbed an equalising try from substitute Colin Hegarty, and O’Flynn added the two points for victory.
Corinthians: M O’Flynn, A O’Connell,J Buckley, F Gormley, O Daly, C Murphy, S Bruce.M Byrne, M Lee, A Glynn, A Casanova, B Murphy, S Burke, S Gerity, K Ryan. Subs, A Walsh, C O’Shea, M Flynn, E Flynn, C Hegarty.