Down blew away Ballymena at Malone Park last weekend, hammering 10 goals against the Senior Two new boys.

And the margin of victory could have been even greater on a day when everything the locals hit ended up in the back of the net.

Not since the halcyon days of the old Intermediate League have 10 goals been scored at Malone Park. And just like a London bus, not one, but two teams scored 10 goals last weekend. Down thirds hit 10 past Kilkeel fourths to record their biggest ever victory.

But back to the senior side which led 4-0 at the interval.

Gavin Ringland opened the scoring in the fifth minute when he converted a cross from Chris Taylor, scoring with a superb drag flick which saw the ball fly into the top corner of the net giving the 'keeper no chance.

Five minutes later Mark Elliott scored from close in after Paul Tate had done all the hard work. Tate got on the score sheet himself in the 20th minute, finishing off a slick move involving Ashley Gibson whose initial shot was saved to allow Tate to nip in and tuck away the rebound.

Elliott then turned provider minutes before the interval when he set up a chance for Taylor who gave the 'keeper no chance with a rasping shot.

The second half was just 30 seconds old when Tate scored his second goal of the afternoon. It came from a short corner after Gibson's shot was blocked by the 'keeper. With the Ballymena defenders guilty of ball-watching, Tate swooped to score his side's fifth goal of the day.

It was evidently clear at this stage that it was going to be a case of how many goals Down would score on a day when they absolutely ran riot.

Gibson made it 6-0 after he started and finished a scintillating move. He picked the ball up on the 25-yard line and ran towards the penalty area. As the 'keeper came out towards him, Gibson kept his nerve and lifted the ball over his head into an empty net.

But there were more goals to come and Elliott scored his second of the afternoon to make it 7-0. Taylor's blistering short corner strike struck one post before rolling along the line and hitting the other. With the 'keeper all at sea and the ball sitting on the goal-line, poacher Elliott made no mistake.

Gibson scored his second and his side's eighth goal when he finished off a superb three-man move. Chris Lennon and James Erskine combined to carve an opening for the striker who made no mistake.

Stephen Ferguson ran virtually the length of the pitch, beating six Ballymena players on the way, before striking a superb shot past the 'keeper, even though he was upended by one of the opposing players.

At 9-0 Down still weren't happy and they made it 10-0 when Ringland scored with a short corner screamer.

No player ended with a hat-trick and in the closing stages, but if those on doubles had passed instead of trying to claim the match ball, Down could and probably should have scored several more goals.