The Magpies took the lead against the run of play with 12 minutes gone when Chris Wood played Jacob Murphy through and although his shot came back off the post, Ryan Fraser followed up to score.
It was 2-0 just two minutes later when Fraser picked out Fabian Schar with a right-wing free-kick and the Switzerland international headed firmly past keeper Robert Sanchez.
Brighton continued to enjoy the greater share of possession, but Magpies keeper Martin Dubravka had only one save of note to make to deny Danny Welbeck as the home side went in at the break 2-0 to the good.
The visitors got themselves back into it within 10 minutes of the restart when skipper Lewis Dunk met Gross’ corner unopposed to head home from close range.
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Rob Sanchez 6 No chance with the goal as he was stranded after Murphy dinked the ball over him and failed to keep out Schar's header for the second.
Joel Veltman 6 A typical Veltman display. Didn't put a foot wrong but little in the way of the spectacular. Solid defending late on as the game became stretched.
Lewis Dunk 7 Wood got the better of him to tee up the opener. Scored with a towering header from Gross's to give Albion a chance.
Shane Duffy 6 Close to scoring early on with a header from a Gross corner. Booked for a foul on Wood after Dunk played his partner into trouble. Played almost as a centre forward towards the end.
Tariq Lamptey 6 Played high up the pitch and teed Welbeck up for his first half chance. Not the impact of previous matches and replaced by Maupay.
Jakub Moder 5 Never really got in the game and replaced by March on 59 minutes.
Pascal Gross 7 A danger from set pieces and competitive in midfield. A controlled performance from the experienced German.
Steven Alzate 6 Solid and disciplined display in midfield without the drive going forward. Replaced by Mac Allister on 79.
Marc Cucurella 6 Struggled with the pace of Murphy early on but remained competitive throughout down the left.
Danny Welbeck 6 Missed a one v one that could have made it 2-1 but he scooped it and Dubravka stood tall. Good to see him complete 90 minutes.
Leo Trossard 5 Grew into the match as it went on. Forced a decent save from Dubravka with a low drive but nowhere near his creative best.