Jeff Goulding rescued a point for Bournemouth with a last gasp stike in a tense evening at Meadow Lane.
Lee Hughes had put the Magpies ahead, following up his own missed spot-kick. This sent his team into the break ahead, though it could have been two if Ben Davies' chip hadn't been disallowed by a questionable offside decision.
Shortly after the interval Brett Pitman drew the game level with a superb low free-kick. However, the lead didn't last long.
Hughes was alert again to nod in at the back post for his 26th of the campaign. His evening was tarnished when he picked up his tenth booking, meaning a two match suspension for the league's top-scorer.
It looked as though Notts were going to hold on to leapfrog their opponents into second. Super sub Goulding changed that with a crisp volley in the dying stages - silencing all but the 199 fans from the south coast.
No manager has started their tenure in a finer manner than Steve Cotterill, who bettered Jimmy Sirrel's opening of three wins on Tuesday against Chesterfield. Stretching that run to five appeared vital in this promotion six-pointer in front of the Sky television cameras.
The viewers at home would have certainly been entertained by the opening stages, as both teams could have taken an early lead. Lee Hughes headed downwards from a Ben Davies corner, though Shwan Jalal was alert to gather, and Kasper Schmeichel was equal to a stinging Anton Robinson strike down to his right.
Schmeichel was beaten moments later when his defence failed to clear the danger. Eventually falling for Alan Connell at close range, he drove low, only for John Thompson to hack clear on the goal line.
Notts were causing problems from the corners and Mike Edwards, like Hughes earlier, could have grabbed an opener. With the ball bobbling around in the goalmouth, the defender poked out a leg but was unable to generate enough power to seriously test Jalal.
On the back of four clean sheets, the Magpies were certainly determined to keep the run going and Schmeichel was pivotal to this. The returning danger man Liam Feeney was certainly posing a serious threat down the right and unleashed a powerful strike that forced County's stopper to fist away.
Fans could sense that a goal was coming and it finally did in the 22nd minutes, following a trip on Davies by Wiggins inside the box. Although Hughes missed for the second consecutive time from the spot, he followed up to slam forcefully into the roof on the net as Jalal attempted to clamber to his feet.
Home supporters raised the roof again when they thought Davies had doubled the lead. In a crowded area the free-scoring midfielder lifted the ball over Jalal and underneath the crossbar but the effort was ruled out for offside.
Notts were much more dominant after the goal and created a number of half chances. The best of these came in first half stoppage time as Stephen Hunt, surging forward down the left, played a one-two with Davies before firing straight at Jalal from 12 yards.
Within six minutes of the restart Bournemouth drew level. From a free-kick on the edge of the box, Pitman stepped up to bend into the bottom corner through a crowd of players and out of the scurrying Schmeichel's reach.
It didn't take Notts long back to edge back in front, though, as they picked up the pace yet again. Davies, from the right flank, swung vigorously behind the Cherries' backline, where, following a bounce, Hughes nodded into the top corner.
Hughes looked determined to grab his fourth hat-trick of the campaign and could have done so on more than one occasion. First he punted hopefully from distance and then almost latched onto a Craig Westcarr header, but was beaten to the ball by Jalal, who had raced sharply off his line.
In comparison with the opening 45 minutes, the second period lacked clear cut chances. This was down to both teams' organised layouts making it difficult to penetrate in the final third.
The visitors did cause a scare, however, during a smart piece of link up play that saw substitute Goulding play in Connell with a clever touch. As the midfielder set himself up to shoot, Hunt stretched to poke the ball away to safety, preserving his team's lead.
Bodies were being thrown on the line, with Ricky Ravenhill just one of many to produce brave blocks. Although they were camped in their own half for a sustained period of time, County were still hoping to steal another goal.
In a quick attack down the left, Westcarr powered in a delivery that Hughes was unable to connect with. He was, nonetheless, booked for the tenth time this term after leading with an arm.
At the other end Pitman was looking dangerous, showing some neat possession play and lurking in some threatening positions. Peeling away from his marker, he was able to produce a goal-bound diving header that required Schmeichel to thump away at full reach.
Feeney followed up and smashed fiercely into the side-netting. It was definitely not a meeting for the nerves and Notts seemed to be hanging on when the encounter moved into added time.
Deep into these four minutes, the constant chanting from the Kop was silenced. Goulding had opened up his body to smash a stunning volley, leaving Schmeichel with little chance of shutting out the effort.
Attendance: 6,120 (199 Bournemouth supporters)
Hoofers Man of the Match: Lee Hughes
Notts County: Kasper Schmeichel, John Thompson, Mike Edwards, Graeme Lee, Stephen Hunt, Craig Westcarr, Neal Bishop(Clapham 78), Ricky Ravenhill, Ben Davies, Luke Rodgers, Lee Hughes (Facey 90).
Substitutes: Russell Hoult, Jamie Clapham, Matt Hamshaw, Karl Hawley, Ben Fairclough, Sean Canham, Delroy Facey.
Scorer(s): Hughes 22, 53
Yellow Card(s): Hughes 80
Bournemouth: Shwan Jalal, Ryan Garry, Marvin Bartley, Anton Robinson, Brett Pitman, Alan Connell, Liam Feeney, Danny Hollands, Rhoys Wiggins, Lee Bradbury, Steve Fletcher (Goulding 60).
Substitutes: Dan Thomas, Sammy Igoe, Josh McQuoid, Jeff Goulding, Joe Partington, Warren Cummings.
Scorer(s): Pitman 5, Goulding 90
Yellow Card(s): Wiggins 16
Report by Dane Vincent