The result was not enough to see them at least grab a spot in the relegation/promotion playoffs as they finished point behind Baroka FC.
As for the latter, they will slug out in the play-offs with Black Leopards and Stellenbosch FC in a bid to maintain their Premiership status after a spirited display in Cape Town.
Two first half goals from Themba Zwane and a penalty from Thabo Nthethe earned Downs a 2-0 lead before Seun Ledwaba pulled one back for the home side.
Both sides started slow, but it sprung into life when Zwane curled in a stunner after the half-hour mark.
Minutes later Nthethe made it 2-0 from the spot after Yannick Zakri was brought down by Tapuwa Kapini.
The Lions of the North looked for a way back which came through Ledwaba before the break to keep their hopes alive.
They got the equalizer through Mothobi Mvala deep into stoppage time to salvage a 2-2 draw.
Baroka on the other hand, scored a minute after the break through veteran midfielder Letladi Madubanya to help the Limpopo-based outfit stun Ajax Cape Town at the Cape Town Stadium.
The well-travelled player fired home from close range after some poor defending from the Capetonians despite the best efforts of the home side.
Madubanya went from hero to villian when he got his marching orders after a second bookable offence, levelling up the numerical order on the day after Ajax also had Roscoe Pietersen sent off.