The seven points Newcastle picked up in the final play of the opening period were the only ones conceded by Brive in the entire time they were at a numerical disadvantage and both Hirèche and Lavergne are convinced that was the turning point in the North East.
"It took us a bit of time to adapt to the referee but we gave everything we had. When we went in at the break at 7-3 down, having finished the first half with 13 players and with the wind against us, we told ourselves we could go and get that win," said Hirèche.
"Subconsciously, they may have thought that they would finish strongly by making us crack. Maybe they thought they could make us suffer by keeping the ball like they did in our first game. But we were prepared to defend against that and we were able to give the right answer.''
"At that moment just after half time when we were still two players short, we understood that if we could keep playing the same way, they would be the ones to crack. We managed to seize that chance,'' added Lavergne.
Brive even cut the deficit to just a single point thanks to the second of Thomas Larajeira's three penalties during the time that both Naikatini and Murphy were cooling off, with the inform centre then slotting the winning strike with six minutes remaining.
The win means quarter-final qualification is now in Brive's hands ahead of the final round of action, with the French side guaranteed to be in the last eight if they avoid defeat at home to Calvisano on Thursday.
It could perhaps have been a different outcome, however, if Newcastle had opted to go for the posts early on rather than aiming for touch when presented with a few kickable penalties.
"That was bit disrespectful from them knowing that qualification was at stake. It gave us some extra belief that we could go on and win the game," said coach Philippe Carobnneau, one of Brive's golden generation of Heineken Cup winners.