It was a day of 'firsts' for Barnsley as they recorded victory over Crewe at Gresty Road - coming back from a goal down to win 2-1.
Reds 2 (Lita 57, Cranie 75)
Crewe 1 (Waters 22)
A goal on his full debut for Leroy Lita and Martin Cranie's first Barnsley goal overturned Billy Waters' first-half strike for the Reds to secure all three points.
It was also a proud afternoon for the Barnsley Academy as three home-grown youngsters sprang from the bench to help their side to victory - including a senior debut for Rhys Oates.
Bradden Inman took advantage of Lita’s poor pass into his own half and charged forward 30 yards before sending his effort wide of the Davies’ left-hand post on 52 minutes.
In the opening two minutes of the second half, both sides came close with half chances. Winnall for the Reds saw his shot from a tight angle blocked after great work to win the ball back by Lita. At the other end Oliver was thwarted by a combination of Cranie and Dudgeon after the former Owls striker found himself one-on-one with Davies.
Chances on goal were very few and far between, with Hourihane hammering well over the bar from 30 yards as half time approached.
Winnall was probably thankful the flag went up after squandering a free header from six yards on half an hour.
Crewe’s first shot of the match found the back of the net on 22 minutes and it was in some style. Billy Waters, who scored his first senior goal against the Reds on Tuesday, volleyed home a terrific drive from a tight angle after greeting Greg Leigh’s delivery.
Treacy whipped in a splendid cross from the left that Winnall connected with well but Shearer was equal to his 10-yard header on two minutes.
Reds boss Danny Wilson made two changes to the side that faced Crewe on home soil earlier in the week as Joe Dudgeon returned alongside Luke Berry at the expense of Reuben Noble-Lazarus and James Bree.
As the clock ticked down Crewe scrambled an attempt at goal through Oliver as the hosts went to throw the kitchen sink at Barnsley but his effort was poor and trickled into the arms of Davies.
Five minutes of stoppage time was added as Barnsley hoped to see out the match.
Yet another Academy graduated stepped up for his professional debut as Rhys Oates replaced Sam Winnall on 89 minutes – meaning all three of Barnsley’s subs were homegrown from the Reds’ youth set-up.
Again the Reds could have yet another, when Bree picked up Digby’s blocked shot and sent in a tasty cross to the far stick that just evaded the foot of Winnall on 85 minutes.
Had Luke Berry taken his time on 82 minutes, he could have secured the victory but lashed his 20 yard effort over the bar.
Barnsley’s first goal-scorer of the afternoon, Leroy Lita, was replaced by Paul Digby on 78 minutes.
On 75 minutes Lewin Nyatanga headed a deep corner to the back post and Martin Cranie, in his third season with the Reds, notched his first Reds goal. The captain’s header was too powerful for Grant to clear off the line and Barnsley had found the lead.
James Bree came on with 72 played for Keith Treacy, just moments after Winnall picked up a booking for a challenge on Grant.
Lita almost grabbed his and his side’s second with an ambitious overhead kick from 12 yards. Winnall headed Hourihane’s high ball back across the penalty area and Lita’s attempt had Shearer stranded but went inches wide on 69 minutes.
The Reds had the bit between their teeth and Winnall’s quick throw-in was met by Hourihane on the half-volley but it whistled over the bar from 20 yards.
On 57 minutes, Barnsley’s first goal of the new season arrived and it was Leroy Lita for the Reds. Sam Winnall’s low cross from the right zipped away from Shearer’s grasp and Lita was on hand at the far post to guide home.
Crewe: Shearer, Tootle, Ray, Dugdale, Turton (Haber 82), Oliver, Inman (Molyneux 79), Waters, Leigh, Ness, Grant.
Subs: Garratt, Guthrie, Atkinson, Saunders, Nolan.
Reds: Davies, Brown, Dudgeon, Berry, Nyatanga, Cranie, Treacy (Bree 72), Hourihane, Winnall (Oates 89), Bailey, Lita (Digby 78).
Subs: M'voto, McHale, Boakye-Yiadom, Dibble.
Referee: A. Davies
Referee's Assistants: P. Graham & J. Mainwaring.
Attendance: 4,502 (876 away)
Fourth Official: S. Copeland