A goal within 20 seconds of the restart by Danny Toner for Down set the tone for the second half of this robust encounter at MacHale Park yesterday where they home side crashed to their third consecutive defeat.
Toner, Malachy Magee and Caolan Taggart pulled the strings for Down who were in a different class in the finishing department to their opponents who lived on the free-taking of Kenny Feeney to stay in the game.
A well-taken individual goal on 20 minutes from Malachy Magee proved to be the pivotal score in the first half but Mayo could have been further in arrears but for some strong defensive play.
Mayo trailed 1-11 to 0-9 at half-time.
Down lost Taggart to a second yellow card for the last ten minutes but Mayo found it hard to make any impression on the visitors' defence in that second half, adding just three points to their first-half tally.
SCORERS - Down: D Toner 1-9 (5f); C Taggart 0-5; M Magee 1-1; C O'Prey 0-3; C Mageean 0-2; C Woods ('65), C Egan, D McManus 0-1 each. Mayo: K Feeney 0-10 (10f); J McManus 0-2.
DOWN - S Keith 7; A Bell 7, M Hughes 7, S Ennis 7; J McGrath 7, C Woods 7, M Ennis 8; C O'Prey 8, D McManus 7; C Magee 8, C Taggart 7, M Turley 8; E Sands 6, C Egan 7, D Toner 9. Subs: P Sheehan 6 J McGrath (26), O McManus 6 for Egan (48), G Jonson 5 for McManus (51), P McManus 6 A Bell (59).
MAYO - D Freyne 8; B Hunt 7, G McManus 8, S Mulroy (7), C Freeman (7), D Kenny (6), T Sweeney (6), G Nolan (7), McDermott (7), S Leneghan (6), K Feeney (8), S Regan (6), D McLoughlin (5), P Hickey (6), J McManus (6). Subs: S Boland for Hickey (h-t), D McTighe for Freeman (43), J Cotter for Leneghan (50), S Morley (6) for Sweeney (64), D Harrison (5) for McManus (66).
REF - S Hynes (Galway).