A single second half goal was enough to defeat Paul Harsley's U23s on the road.
With the match seemingly heading for a stalemate midway through the second half, Alex Samizadeh managed to bundle the ball over the line following a Bolton corner.
The Reds started in positive fashion and went close early on with two efforts from the returning Jared Bird following an injury lay-off, and striker Kayden Jackson. Both players saw their efforts well saved by the home 'keeper, Howard.
The hosts did have chances of their own however, but Reds goalie Nick Townsend was in fine form between the posts. The stopper denied Bolton on three separate occasions with excellent saves to keep the scores level at the break.
Half Time: Bolton 0-0 Barnsley
The second half began with the Reds seemingly on top and looking most likely to score. Josh Kay partnered bird in central midfield which was also his return from time out with injury, with both players looking sharp and linking-up play well.
On the hour mark Bolton were given the chance to take the lead. Conor Wilkinson went down in the area and a penalty was awarded. Max Clayton stepped up to take the kick but blazed his powerful effort over the bar, keeping the scores level.
The winning goal did eventually come however. A corner was swung into the box and with bodies everywhere a scramble for the ball appeared, where Samizadeh tapped home to secure the three points.
The Reds did come close late on with efforts from Ryan Hedges and Jackson again, but Howard stood firm in his net to cap off a fine display.
Full Time: Bolton 1-0 Barnsley
Reds XI: Townsend (GK), Wardle, Rodriguez, Proctor, Dolan, Hedges, Kay, Bird, Dembele, K. Jackson, Patrick
Subs: Walton (GK), Lund, Palmer, Carvell, Charles.