Barnsley moved off the bottom of the Championship with a cracking 1-0 win over promotion-chasing Nottingham Forest at Oakwell.
Barnsley went into this fixture knowing a win would also be the Reds’ first back-to-back home wins for nearly a year.
Hammered 5-0 last Saturday at Huddersfield, it was little wonder Reds’ boss Wilson wanted his side to bounce back with a much improved performance.
Wilson must have been pleased with what he saw as well as the hosts started brightly and dominated the early exchanges.
After only two minutes the recalled O’Brien, back in the side having recovered from flu, lashed a powerful right-foot shot just wide of the left upright. It was a positive start against opponents in fifth position in the league.
Then, just four minutes later, winger Jennings found time and space to unleash a fierce right-foot shot.
But the former Bayern Munich man was denied an opening goal after a fine fingertip save from Darlow, the keeper tripping the ball over the crossbar.
Striker O’Grady was making a nuisance of himself as a lone striker and he won a free-kick in a dangerous position in the ninth minute, with Gomis the first player to be booked.
However, the Reds’ couldn’t make anything of the dead ball situation as they continued to try and make an early breakthrough.
The Reds kept pressing for the opening goal and Woods, also recalled to the starting line-up, lashed wide of the left post with a powerful strike.
But despite their early pressure the home side were nearly caught out when Algerian Abdoun hit the base of a post with a snapshot that saw keeper Steele beaten.
And then Forest had an even better chance to score. Abdoun whipped in a delightful cross but Mackie somehow headed wide with the goal at his mercy. It was a glaring miss.
Fox was the second Forest to be booked just before half-time after a careless challenge, but the visitors were gradually getting to grips with the contest.
However, neither side could create any clearcut opportunities during the following ten minute period as the game became slightly sterile.
Five minutes before the break Woods picked out Ramage with a lovely ball, but the big defender headed wide of the target.
But despite their best efforts both side’s just couldn’t find the breakthrough they craved.
The Reds made the perect start to the second half when JENNINGS put the home side ahead with a sublime strike.
He let rip with a vicious 25-yard strike that beat keeper Darlow and flew into the bottom right-hand corner.
It was the player’s first for the Oakwell club and his first in English football since April 2011 when he netted for his former club Tranmere Rovers. Just before the hour mark O’Grady got in a a shot but his effort was deflected wide of the target as the Reds pushed for a second goal.
Hunt found himself the first Barnsley player to be booked after a late challenge, but the Reds were on top and looking for a second goal to kill off the match.
Steele was also booked soon after for time-wasting as the Reds were forced to soak up some pressure as Forest battled for an equaliser.
Paterson rifled wide from distance as Forest turned the screw trying to salvage a point, before the dangerous Abdoun blasted well wide of the target.
Dawson found himself booked for a late challenge as the Reds were made to work for possession with the visitors desperate to get back into the fixture.
Wilson introduced Frimpong for Woods with 13 minutes remaining to add some fresh legs to his midfield with the game getting stretched.
But the Reds dug deep and were hanging on for three welcome points in their quest to avoid relegation.
Mellis was the fourth Barnsley player to be booked with five minutes remaining in a frantic finish.
Keeper Steele saved the Reds with a fine save in injury-time. He did brilliantly well to tip Adboun’s free-kick past a post.
From the resulting corner, substitute Derbyshire rifled a shot straight at Steele. It was tense and dramatic stuff, but the Reds held on for their first back-to-back home wins since March last season.