Sherjill MacDonald struck a first-half hat-trick for Hereford in a convincing win over Rochdale at Spotland.
The hosts took the lead through Simon Ramsden's close-range effort before MacDonald side-footed home to equalise.
MacDonald raced clear and slotted in to give Hereford the lead and applied a razor-sharp finish for his third.
Gary Hooper beat Tom Kennedy and lobbed over Sam Russell to put Hereford 4-1 up, before Rene Howe's late header from a corner pulled one back for the hosts.
Rochdale: Russell, Ramsden, Stanton, McArdle (Higginbotham 46), Kennedy, Perkins, Doolan (William Buckley 46), Jones (Basham 74), Rundle, Le Fondre, Howe.
Subs Not Used: Spencer, Holness.
Goals: Ramsden 7, Howe 90.
Hereford: Brown, McClenahan, McCombe, Rose, Collins, Taylor, Johnson, Diagouraga (Gwynne 54), Easton, MacDonald (Robinson 81), Hooper.
Subs Not Used: Ingham, Benjamin, Broadhurst.
Goals: MacDonald 14, 21, 31, Hooper 73.
Ref: Scott Mathieson (Cheshire).