Reds 2 (Hourihane 13, Cole 38)
Leyton Orient 0
A momentous day for Barnsley and Danny Wilson was marked with a win as the Reds scored two first half goals to see off Leyton Orient 2-0.
An early goal from Conor Hourihane was matched by one from Devante Cole before half time as the Reds sealed the game before the break.
The only blotch on the day was Ross Turnbull’s sending off in the second half for bringing down an Orient attacker who was in a goal scoring position.
Looking to impress on Danny Wilson’s 1000thleague game as a manager, the Reds started with a spring in their step but it was the visitors who had the first sight of goal.
After five minutes Orient’s Bradley Pritchard was able to release a shot towards Turnbull’s goal but the effort never had the accuracy it needed and the danger quickly went away.
The Reds were quickly back on the attack and only minutes later Hemmings had a chance to get the game’s first goal.
Connecting with a cross from the left side, the striker’s volleyed effort went just wide of the Orient keeper’s right hand post but his effort made Barnsley’s intentions clear.
Continuing the press the visitors, Hemmings was again involved soon after and the striker turned provider this time, threading an accurate through ball to Conor Hourihane who was able to round the keeper and calmly slot home to give the Reds an early advantage.
Winning a free-kick near the corner flag on the left flank after 26 minutes, Hourihane whipped in the ball but was unable to find a red shirt in the area.
When the ball eventually did find its way to Barnsley player, James Bailey was unable to get the ball fully under his control before shooting high over the bar.
With just over five minutes left to play in the first period, the Reds did find the back of the Orient net and doubled their lead.
Starting off with a fantastic interception from Dale Jennings on the left wing, the midfielder then squared the ball to Devante Cole who finished side-footed past Legzdins in the Orient goal.
Winning a free-kick in added time around 35 yards from goal, the Reds were presented with an opportunity to add another before the break but Dale Jennings’ driven effort came straight back off the Orient wall.
The great passing that had led to many of the Reds’ chances in the first half was instantly back underway when the sides returned to the pitch and it didn’t take Barnsley long to create a chance.
After only three minutes of the second half, Hemmings who had looked dangerous before the break found space to release a shot towards goal. The effort was well hit but it went just over the visitor’s bar.
The game settled for a time after that until Ross Turnbull was forced to make a magnificent one handed save from an Orient head following a corner in the 56thminute.
The visitors did have a slight revival having introduced all their substitutes for the second half but it was short lived as the Reds continued to defend well.
Dale Jennings was next to fire at the Orient goal after the ball fell to him from the shins of Orient’s Mathieu Baudry but he too could not keep his shot on target.
Luke Berry then almost made it three for the Reds on 62 minutes, connecting with a searching cross from Jennings it looked as though the midfielder had scored but his effort was well kept out by Legzdins.
On 68 minutes Conor Hourihane was presented with a free-kick after Cole was tripped by McAnuff but the Irishman’s delivery failed to find anyone in the area.
Some defensive miscommunication led to Barnsley’s next chance after a back-pass caught the Orient keeper short and went out for a corner.
Luckily for the O’s, nothing came from the corner but the away side started to look tired at the back as the game went into its final minutes.
Barnsley were then dealt a huge blow when Ross Turnbull was sent off on 74 minutes after appearing to bring down an Orient attacker who was through on goal.
Turnbull was replaced by Adam Davies in goal at the expense of Cole and his first task was to deal with the resulting free-kick from Shane Lowry but the effort never troubled the substitute keeper as it sailed high into the stand.
Down to ten men for the last part of the game, the Reds didn’t settle on their lead and continued to attack Orient.
Another long range free-kick, again taken by Hourihane was knocked short this time to Jennings with a little over five minutes left, which turned out to be a bad decision after he was robbed of possession almost instantly.
Successfully seeing out the win with only 10 men, Barnsley’s good performance didn’t suffer as a result of the late dismissal as the team held strong through five minutes of added time.
Reds: Turnbull, Berry, Nyatanga, Cranie (C), Hourihane, Hemmings (72), Jennings, Ramage, Holgate, Bailey, Cole (75).
Subs: Davies (75), Brown, Treacy, Digby, Oates, Trotta, Lita (72).
Leyton Orient: Legzdins, Omozusi (45), Sawyer, Vincelot, Cuthbert (C), McAnuff, Lowry, Batt, Wright (54), Pritchard, Plasmati (17).
Subs: Woods, Baudry (45), Cox (54), Mooney (17), Lee, Agyemang, Dossena.