Ross County’s final game in the Championship ended in defeat as they lost a five-goal thriller at Falkirk but the win was not enough to keep the Bairns in the division.
Alloa’s point at Ayr ensured their survival with Falkirk finishing bottom of the division on goal difference behind Queen of the South, who lost at home to Partick Thistle.
The champions made five changes to the team which secured the title last weekend against Queen of the South with Michael Gardyne and Josh Millin dropping to the bench while Andy Boyle, Tom Grivosti and Don Cowie were all absent.
Iain Vigurs, Declan McManus, Lewis Spence, Callum Semple and Daniel Armstrong were their replacements in the starting 11.
County arrived at Falkirk Stadium without a care in the world. The pressure was well and truly off the visitors following their title win last week but the same could not be said for the home side who knew anything other than a victory would consign them to League 1 next season.
Aaron Jarvis struck the post with a header for the Bairns as they started on the front foot before County goalkeeper Scott Fox hobbled off after landing awkwardly in the 20th minute.
His replacement Ross Munro was on the pitch a matter of minutes before the home side opened the scoring.
Zak Rudden got the final touch, firing the loose ball into the net after his initial effort had struck the post with Aaron Jarvis managing to cut the rebound back into his path.
County responded to the loss of the goal by creating several chances of their own to equalise before the break. Daniel Armstrong struck the post before Harry Burgoyne denied Brian Graham and Ross Stewart while Graham also dragged a shot wide.
County kept the pressure on in the second half and their efforts were rewarded just before the hour mark when Stewart rose to head Graham’s cross home for the equaliser.
Three goals followed in a mad five-minute spell with Vigurs firing Stewart’s cushioned header home to make it 2-1 to County beefeore Ciaran McKenna headed home an equaliser for the Bairns.
The home supporters were still celebrating his equaliser when captain Jordan McGhee cut in from the right before beating Munro with a curling effort to make it 3-2 to the home side.
However, McGhee’s late winner proved to be in vain for the home side.