Donal O'Hare's goal after just 20 seconds helped Down to a 1-12 to 0-11 victory over Monaghan in the McKenna Cup Section A game at Clones.
Monaghan hit back after O'Hare early strike and were soon level but Kevin McKernan hit the final point of the half to edge Down 1-5 to 0-7 ahead.
The hosts moved in front on the restart but two late Paul Devlin points secured a first McKenna win for Down.
UUJ beat Cavan 1-8 to 0-10 on Saturday in the other Section A match.
O'Hare slammed the ball into the net after a neat one-two with Cathal Crilly to give the Mourne men the perfect start.
Monaghan made a positive response with Darren Hughes and Daniel McKenna among their scorers.
|Dr McKenna Cup Section A|
|Monaghan 0-20 2-10 UUJ||Saturday 3 January|
|Down 1-9 2-11 Cavan||Sunday 4 January|
|Cavan 0-10 1-8 UUJ||Saturday 10 January|
|Monaghan 0-11 1-12 Down||Sunday 11 January|
|Down v UUJ, Pairc Esler||Wednesday 14 January, 19:30 GMT|
|Cavan v Monaghan, Breffni Park||Wednesday 14 January, 19:30 GMT|
McKernan and O'Hare were on target before Paddy Kierans slotted over an equaliser for Monaghan.
McKernan's score ensured Down went in ahead at the break but Monaghan made a bright start to the second half with scores coming from Hughes and substitute Paul Finlay.
Down enjoyed a period of dominance which brought points from Conor Garvey and substitute Arthur McConville.
McKernan was stretched off, with his leg in a brace, after a collision with 10 minutes remaining and Down officials reported that the key forward will undergo a scan.
Kevin Anderson, who came on as Kernan's replacement, made an immediate impact with a point before Devlin's late double.
Down may have won but Monaghan keeper Enda Duffy was man of the match after a string of outstanding saves.