Down got their promotion challenge back on track in Division 3 of the National Football League when they scored a convincing win over Longford.
The powerful midfield pairing of Dan Gordon and Stephen Kearney laid the foundations for the Down victory and particularly prominent in the scoring stakes were John Fegan and Daniel Hughes, who fired over eight points between them.
Although they had the better of the exchanges in the first-half, the visitors were guilty of kicking a total of eight wides and had to be content with a 0-7 to 0-6 lead at the break.
Longford got back on level terms in the opening minute of the second half when substitute Paddy Dowd landed a cracking point.
The home side were guilty of some poor finishing on the changeover and all they could manage during the remainder of the game was just one more point — a free converted by Francis McGee in the 49th minute.
Down had a goal disallowed for a square infringement after Paul McCumiskey flicked the ball to the net and soon after Longford keeper Stephen Watters made a terrific point-blank save to deny Ronan Murtagh.
Down gradually converted their superiority into scores and added another six points to their tally to run out comfortable winners.
John Fegan (2), Jamie O’Reilly, John Boyle, Daniel Hughes and Stephen Kearney accounted for the scores in the second half and Longford were lucky not to lose by a wider margin.
LONGFORD: S Watters; D Brady, N Farrell, P Foy; D Masterson, E Williams, K Smyth; P Reynolds, K Mulligan; W Skelly (0-1, f), P Shanley (0-1), P Berry; P Barden, D Barden, F McGee (0-4, 4f). Subs:- C Mimnagh (0-1) for P Shanley (25 mins); P Dowd (0-1) for P Reynolds (ht); S Doyle for W Skelly (yellow card, 43 mins); P Reynolds for F McGee (64 mins).
DOWN: B McVeigh; C McGovern, P Murphy, H Davey; D Rafferty, K McKernan, C Garvey; D Gordon, S Kearney (0-1); J Fegan (0-5, 3f), J Boyle (0-1, D Hughes (0-3); J O’Reilly (0-2), R Murtagh (0-1), P McCumiskey. Subs:K Duffin for P Murphy (yellow card, 35 mins); L Howard for C McGovern (51 mins); B McArdle for J Fegan (70 mins); C McGee for R Murtagh (72 mins).
Referee: M Meade (Limerick).