It was very much a game of two halves at Seel Park on Saturday when Stalybridge Celtic came back from two goals down at the interval to win 4-2 thanks to a hat-trick from prolific striker Aaron Burns.
The Lilywhites fielding close to their strongest eleven in the first half stormed into an early lead when in the 4th minute Jack Tuohy's right wing corner was powerfully home by skipper Tom Dean.
Mossley continued to force the pace but a rare Stalybridge chance saw Ollie Martin make a fine save to deny Liam Dickinson.
A second goal arrived for Mossley five minutes before the break when Liam Ellis raced down the left wing and his low cross was turned into his own net by the hapless Alex Honeyball.
Mossley might have had a third moments later but Mason Duffy's effort from 15 yards flew millimeters wide.
The second half began with Mossley again on top, but, as both sides made substitutions the visitors began to take the upper hand. The arrears were halves on 59 minutes when Jake Charles was brought down in the box by keeper Ollie Martin and Aaron Burns stepped home to smash home from the spot.
Stalybridge upped the pressure and Greg Wilkinson knocked home the equaliser on 68 minutes.
Mossley were denied a certain penalty when Danny McLaughlin was upended by keeper Lewis King before Stalybridge took the lead on 81 minutes. Aaron Burns' shot was brilliantly saved by Martin but the dangerous front man was quickest to react to the rebound and made no mistake at the second attempt.
The result was wrapped up four minutes from time when Burns headed home a left wing cross to complete an impressive treble.