A superb debut goal from Adam Armstrong helped Barnsley to a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Preston North End at Deepdale.
The on-loan Newcastle United striker scored the winner 11 minutes from time after spinning inside Alex Baptiste and caressing the ball beyond the reach of Denmark international stopper, Anders Lindegaard.
Sam Winnall had given the Reds the lead at the break with his first goal of the season just before the half hour, latching onto Marley Watkins’ inviting centre.
Aiden McGeady drew Preston level shortly after the hour with a long-range strike but Armstrong was the hero on the day coming off the bench to earn the Reds their fourth league win of the season.
Preston almost levelled in added time through McGeady, but his powerful drive was just wide of the mark.
Victory moves Paul Heckingbottom’s side up to second in the Championship table, four points behind current leaders Huddersfield Town!
Adam Davies was the first ‘keeper called into action, racing off his line to gather Callum Robinson’s third minute effort with Eoin Doyle lurking dangerously.
Lively winger Adam Hammill produced the Reds’ first clear cut chance eight minutes in, bending an effort into the arms of Denmark international stopper Andres Lindegaard from just outside the area.
That was quickly followed by the best chance of the opening exchanges as Marley Watkins turned Andy Yiadom's cross into Sam Winnall’s path and only a fine save from Lindegaard prevented the striker finding the net.
Davies showed incredible reactions to turn away Paul Gallagher’s in-swinging free kick on 12 minutes. He did not see the ball until very late but did enough to claw it onto the post and away from danger.
Marc Roberts was next to try his luck for the Reds just past the quarter hour, rising highest to meet Adam Hammill’s delivery, only to head inches over the Preston crossbar.
Paul Heckingbottom’s side eventually made their pressure tell just before the half hour mark as Marley Watkins played the ball delightfully across the face of goal for Winnall to slide in and net his first Reds goal of season.
Preston responded with a dangerous centre into the box, which was expertly diverted to safety by Roberts before Tommy Spurr received the first caution of the game for pulling back Ryan Kent.
Doyle came close to drawing North End level just before the break but failed to direct an inviting centre on target.
Greg Cunningham was booked less than two minutes into the second half for a foul on Andy Yiadom and Conor Hourihane forced a smart save from Lindegaard at his near post from the resultant free kick.
Roberts followed Cunningham into the book soon after for a foul on Robinson out wide but Gallagher could not find the target or a teammate with a teasing delivery.
An excellent 56th minute centre from Cunningham was met by North End skipper Tom Clarke and his header drifted just wide of Davies’ goal.
Heckingbottom introduced Adam Armstrong for his Reds debut but it was Preston who levelled the game on 65 minutes.
A short corner routine from the Lilywhites saw Aiden McGeady work some space on the edge of the penalty box and fire a blistering effort past Davies.
Sam Morsy was introduced in place of Winnall but Simon Grayson’s side continued their search for a second with McGeady, Jordan Hugill and Robinson all going close.
Eventually, the Reds regained their lead through a moment of brilliance from Armstrong.
The Newcastle United loanee raced onto Hourihane’s lofted ball, superbly spun inside the area and fired the ball past the stranded Lindegaard.
McGeady almost equalised for North End in stoppage time with a rasping drive from the edge of the area but it flew into the side netting of Davies’ goal, as Barnsley held on for the win.
Preston: Lindegaard, Vermijl, Cunningham, Clarke, Gallagher (Johnson, 77’ ), Doyle (Makienok, 81’ ), McGeady, Spurr (Hugill, 60’ ), Welsh, Baptiste, Robinson.
Subs: Maxwell, Browne, Pringle, Huntington.
Reds: Davies, Yiadom, Roberts, MacDonald, White, Hammill (Kpekawa, 90+1’ ), Scowen, Hourihane, Kent (Armstrong, 62’ ), Winnall (Morsy, 65’ ), Watkins.
Subs: Townsend, Lee, A. Jackson, Bradshaw.