Reds 2 (Nyatanga 66, Rachubka OG 79)
After a slow first half, the Reds improved greatly after the break and scored twice in the second period to claim all three points here at Oakwell this afternoon.
Firstly going ahead through a headed goal from Lewin Nyatanga, the Reds sealed the game when they forced Crewe's Paul Rachubka to parry into his own goal from a corner with just over ten minutes to go.
Knowing that a win today against Crewe could see the Reds leapfrog their opponents, there was a lot to play for from the off as Barnsley also looked to forget their recent heavy loss at the hands of Crawley.
The Reds' first chance of the game came after five minutes when referee Darren Deadman awarded a free-kick around 20 yards from goal.
Known for his lethal dead-ball abilities, Conor Hourihane took the set-piece but his drifting cross went over the heads of everyone in the visitors' box.
The game went quiet for a period following this until Crewe won a corner on 17 minutes. From the delivery Marcus Haber was able to head towards goal but Adam Davies managed to palm the ball away from the line.
Haber was again proving to be a thorn in the side of the Barnsley defenders when he ran onto a long ball on 21 minutes and fired a good-looking shot towards goal.
In the squad in place of Ross Turnbull, Adam Davies again made another good save and denied the Alex from taking the lead.
Looking to make more of an impact on the game, the Reds went on the attack soon after and a great cross from James Bailey looked to have found the head of Hemmings but the delivery turned out to be marginally too high.
With a chance to grab a goal before half time, the Reds won a corner on 40 minutes after some good work from George Smith down the left hand side.
From the corner, M'Voto went close as the Reds really piled on the pressure in search of a goal to take the lead before the break.
A corner five minutes after the restart gave the Reds a chance to show their opponents how dangerous they are in the air.
Beating his marker, Martin Cranie was able to meet the cross with his head but the effort was just off target and the ball shot over the bar.
That was the highlight of the opening 15 minutes of the half for the Reds as it began to look as though one goal may just seal all three points for either team this afternoon.
The Reds did look the more likely to score and on 63 minutes James Bailey again delivered another fantastic cross but Hemmings was rather taken by surprise as the ball found its way to him.
Changing things in attack, George Waring replaced Leroy Lita soon after as the Reds looked to try and make more use of the good crosses that have been coming in this afternoon.
The change was instantaneous as a cross from Scowen from the left neatly found Nyatanga and the defender happily headed past Garratt in the Crewe goal to give the Reds the lead.
Barnsley continued to attack the Railwaymen in search of another goal and James Bailey got forward for the Reds' next chance but he was unable to keep his shot down after finding space in the box.
The shots kept coming for the Reds and Ben Pearson was next in line to try his luck from distance but he too could not keep his effort on target.
Rewarded for their efforts, a corner presented a chance for George Smith to send in a cross with around ten minutes left to play.
Crewe's substitute keeper Paul Rachubka flapped at the delivery and in the process ended up knocking the ball into the back of his own net to double the Reds' lead.
Grateful for the assistance, Barnsley immediately set about looking for a third goal to completely kill off their opponents in the closing minutes of the game.
Reds: Davies, Nyatanga, Cranie (C), M'Voto, Smith, Scowen, Hourihane (45), Pearson, Bailey, Lita (65), Hemmings (90).
Subs: Dibble, Lalkovic, Holgate, Waring (65), Berry, O'Sullivan (45), Oates (90).
Crewe: Garratt (71), Davis (C), Ray, Turton, Baillie, Jones, Haber, Ness, Tate (80), Ajose, Grant (69).
Subs: Rachubka (71), Inman, Cooper (69), Waters (80), Nolan, Leigh, Stewart.
Referee: Darren Deadman
Attendance: 8635 (313 Away)