BRIGHTON 1 NEWCASTLE 2 (Diame, Perez)
Darlow, Yedlin, Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Ritchie, Colback (Murphy 74), Shelvey, Atsu, Diame, Gouffran (Perez 82)
Unused Subs: Elliot, Hanley, Gamez, Anita, Mitrovic
Two late goals secured a 2-1 win for Newcastle at Brighton and a return to the top of the Sky Bet Championship.
The Seagulls were leading through Glenn Murray's controversial penalty until a fortunate effort from Mo Diame nine minutes from time hauled Newcastle level.
Then with a minute to go, substitute Ayoze Perez secured the victory and lifted the Magpies back above Brighton at the summit.
Both these teams are looking over their shoulders with third-placed Huddersfield building up a head of steam as they try to muscle in on the automatic promotion spots, and it is Newcastle who will be breathing easier after moving eight points clear of the Terriers.
Brighton, having regained top spot at the weekend after Newcastle stuttered at home to Bristol City, went at their visitors from the start with Bruno and Sam Baldock forcing early saves from Karl Darlow.
The breakthrough came in the 14th minute when Ciaran Clark and Murray tangled in the area as they awaited a corner.
If anything the pair were wrestling each other, but top-flight ref Bobby Madley ruled in Murray's favour and the striker coolly dispatched his 17th league goal of the season from the spot.
Brighton had won all 18 of the previous matches in which they had scored first this season, but this was going to be a major test of that record - especially after left-back Seb Pocognoli limped off to leave young substitute Fikayo Tomori to deal with the threat of Christian Atsu.
Newcastle began to find their feet and Matt Ritchie's cross clipped the crossbar before Yoan Gouffran, a surprise choice up front in the absence of injured top scorer Dwight Gayle, robbed Lewis Dunk only to see his shot saved by David Stockdale.
The visitors should have equalised In first-half stoppage time when DeAndre Yedlin's cross was met by Atsu eight yards out, but he placed his shot too close to Stockdale who made a fine point-blank save.
Moments into the second half Brighton went agonisingly close to doubling their lead, Dunk's header beating Darlow but cleared from under the bar by Paul Dummett.
Newcastle were roared on by an impressive 2,600 fans, many who made a 700-mile round trip, and poured forward again but Stockdale denied Gouffran and kept out Daryl Murphy's header.
However, with the clock running down Stockdale punched a corner to the feet of Atsu.
He mis-hit his shot completely on the edge of the area and it was hurtling yards wide. However, the ball spun off Diame and looped into the air, eluding Stockdale and finding the top right corner, leaving the goalkeeper crestfallen and both Newcastle players looking at each other in disbelief.
There was an even later sting in the tail when Atsu got clear down the left and crossed for Perez to sidefoot a dramatic winner and put Newcastle back in control of the promotion race.