Munster back rower Barry O’Mahony scored a try in each half as Garryowen secured a league double over Dolphin at Musgrave Park.
The Light Blues, who had been challengers for the title before falling away, had their pack to thank for this latest win in difficult weather conditions.
The wind and rain dictated play for the most part, with Garryowen’s back row of Thomas Anderson, Barry O'Mahony and captain David Sherry proving particularly effective in both defence and attack.
After Barry Keeshan hit an early penalty wide for Dolphin, the visitors took a lead they would not relinquish.
Scrum half Neil Cronin made a sniping break and the pack drove up close to the Dolphin whitewash with Cronin feeding flanker O’Mahony with the try-scoring pass. New out-half Andrew O'Byrne was able to convert for a 7-0 start.
A break from Danny Barnes lifted Dolphin briefly and current Ireland Under-20 international Rory Scannell also threatened with ball in hand, with back rower Miah Cronin popping up in attack too.
Although number 10 Keeshan got the Leesiders off the mark with a 25th minute penalty, O’Byrne replied with three points after the hosts’ blindside Rob O’Herlihy was sin-binned.
10-3 in arrears, Dolphin improved after the break and a 46th minute penalty from out-half Keeshan brought them closer on the scoreboard.
But Steve Ford's men failed to capitalise on good approach work by replacements Cian Bohane and Brian Slater, as Garryowen decisively added a second try from a lineout drive.
The pushover effort paid dividends with half-an-hour remaining, O’Mahony dotting down once again with O’Byrne unable to tag on the extras from the touchline.
The worsening weather impacted on both sides’ play during the remainder of the game, with Garryowen’s hard grind over the first hour enough to see them claim a deserved away victory.
Referee: Eddie Hogan O'Connell (IRFU)