An amazing stoppage time turnaround saw Albion come from 2-1 down to claim all three points as Aaron Webster and Billy Kee both scored during the six minutes of added time indicated by referee Andy Haines. Albion had been knocking on the Hereford door most of the second half but just when it looked as it time was about to run out the two late goals secured all the points.
In form striker Billy Kee shook off a groin injury to reclaim his place in Albion's starting line-up. The former Leicester City youngster was paired with Calvin Zola in attack as Jimmy Phillips dropped to the bench. Tony James continued in central defence as Ryan Austin started his two match suspension and Aaron Webster returned at left back in place of Danny Blanchett.
After starting the season entrenched in the League 2 relegation places Hereford came into the game on the back of a reasonable run of form that had seen them climb clear of immediate danger.
The opening stages of the game were played predominantly in the Hereford half of the pitch. A long throw into the Burton box was all that the Bulls could muster early on as Albion's patient passing kept them in their own half although there was nothing to seriously test home keeper David Cornell.
The Bulls though broke dangerously in the 13th minute and Nathan Stanton picked up a yellow card for pulling back Nathan Elder as he looked to burst into the penalty area. It almost cost Albion dearly as the free kick that was orignally hit into the defensive wall broke back out and when it came to the feet of loanee striker Tom Barkhuizen he turned a dragged a low shot just wide of the upright.
Home pressure soon told and the Bulls were awarded a penalty in the 18th minute for a foul in the area by McGrath as a corner came in. Midfielder Rob PURDIE confidently stepped up and stroked home the spot kick down the middle as Ross Atkins dived to his right.
The lead lasted for just four minutes as Albion hit back. Good interplay down the left saw Jacques Maghoma weave some magic to beat the full back. A lovely cross into the near post found Calvin ZOLA unmarked and the striker powerfully headed home from eight yards.
Albion almost had the lead in the 28th minute but Cleveland Taylor's shot was saved by David Cornell with the keeper watching anxiously as the ball trickled just wide of his post.
Zola then almost turned provider in the 32nd minute. A teasing run saw his trick his way along the bye line before crossing into the centre where he found Billy Kee who disappointingly headed over the crossbar.
The home side weathered Burton's pressure and retook the lead on 35 minutes. Purdie's ball found BARKHUIZEN and as Albion's defence went to sleep the youngster dribbled all the way into the six yard box and somehow managed to beat Ross Atkins at his near post from a tight angle.
It was a real sucker punch goal and Albion did their best to get back on the attack. A cross from Cleveland Taylor took a fortunate defelection off a defender to end up in the hands of keeper Cornell but on the whole Albion's final ball was just lacking the required quality.
Andy Corbett saw a shot deflect out off one if his team mates and then almost saw Hereford grab a third as his slip allowed Steven Leslie the chance to shoot but the winger sliced his shot wide of the post.
Half time: Hereford United 2-1 Burton Albion
The Brewers made a change at the break with Chris Palmer brought on to face one his former clubs in place of Adam Bolder. The midfielder quickly made his presence felt with a teasing cross in the 49th minute. Aaron Webster jumped highest at the back post to meet it but the ball fell safely into the hands of Cornell although the Albion man clearly felt he had been impeded in jumping for the ball.
Purdie picked up a yellow card for the home side after sliding through Maghoma as he tried to get onto Palmer's pass.
Albion made their second change on 58 minutes. Cleveland Taylor was the man to make way as Andres Gurrieri was given his first league appearance for the Brewers after an encouraging debut at Oldham last week.
The substitute was immediately involved and almost set up a chance for Maghoma. A little flick from Aaron Webster's throw gave Maghoma a chance to surge towards goal but disappointly he chose to try and find Kee rather than shooting and the chance was wasted.
Palmer wasted a superb chance to score against his former employers on 65 minutes. Good work from Zola and Maghoma found him unmarked on the edge of the box but he wastefully leant back and volleyed high over the crossbar.
Albion continued to press and Zola was only inches away from connecting with Maghoma's teasing cross into the penalty area as the game ticked into the final twenty minutes.
Hereford were having to play on the counter a lot of the time and Leslie tested Atkins with a low drive on 74 minutes, the Albion keeper getting down well to push the ball away to safety.
Jimmy Phillips was the final throw of the dice for Albion as he replaced Andy Corbett with 14 minutes to go. It allowed Albion to go three at the back as they went in search of that elusive equaliser. It was a move that almost cost Albion dearly as Barkhuizen broke as he blocked Webster's clearance. The striker was forced wide but just when it seemed that John McGrath had cleared he squandered possession and then watched on as the resultant shot deflected off him and just over for a corner.
Another chance went begging as Palmer put in a cross that Phillips headed down but Zola was denied by Cornell right on the goal line.
McGrath picked up a yellow card for a foul on Harry Pell as he tried to break away but things got heated as the two exchanged words immediately after.
As the board went up indicating an added six minutes there was consternation amongst the home fans but it only took Albion one of those minutes to find that elusive equaliser. As the ball bobbled around on the edge of the penalty area Aaron WEBSTER showed the coolest head to bring the ball under control and sweep home a low right footed shot to fire home his 99th goal for the club.
All hell was let loose and amazingly the turnaround was complete two minutes later as Maghoma pumped a bal into the six yard box. Calvin Zola was involved in the middle but the ball fell for Billy Kee who put the ball over the line
HEREFORD: Cornell, Green, Heath (Dalibard, 74), Pell, Townsend, Purdie, Leslie, Featherstone, Clist, Barkhuizen, Elder. Substitutes: Arquin, Facey, Bartlett, Clucas.
ALBION: Atkins; Corbett (Phillips, 76), James, Stanton, Webster; Taylor (Gurrieri, 58), Bolder (Palmer, 46), McGrath, Maghoma; Zola, Kee. Substitutes: Poole, Phillips, Amankwaah.
Referee: Mr. A.Haines (Tyne & Wear)
GOALS: Hereford - Purdie (19 pen), Barkhuizen (34); Albion - Zola (23), Webster (90+1), Kee (90+3)
Attendance: 2,136 (270 away)