A SECOND half brace by Danny Haynes secured Barnsley a derby triumph at the Keepmoat Stadium last night.
The Reds dominated the game after the break and Rovers, who had shaded the first half, can have no argument with the result.
Barnsley’s victory saw them climb above Rovers and they will be looking to push upwards in the coming weeks while Rovers need to regain their swagger and confidence.
With injury doubts Mark Wilson and Dean Shiels proving their fitness Rovers kept faith with the side beaten 3-2 by Ipswich at Portman Road.
Barnsley welcomed back central defenders Stephen Foster and Jason Shackell after suspension.
Shackell spent most of last season on loan at Doncaster but joined the Reds in the summer.
Rovers were the first to threaten but Billy Sharp’s second-minute 20 yarder lacked the power to test Luke Steele.
The 10,000-plus crowd created a charged atmosphere as the sides looked for an early breakthrough.
Barnsley midfielder Hugo Colace let fly with a cracking shot from 30 yards, but keeper Neil Sullivan had it covered.
Sharp, who scored both goals at Ipswich, shot just wide with a low 20 yarder.
Wilson cut out a goal bound header by Colace at the expense of a corner.
Steele saved well from Sharp at the near post at the expense of a 19th minute corner after Wilson’s cross, meant for James Hayter - had found him at the far post from Wilson’s left-wing cross.
Sharp had looked full of running and was proving a handful for the Reds’ defence.
Sullivan used his height advantage to punch clear under pressure from Barnsley’s new signing Danny Haynes, on the edge of the box.
Wilson had made a number of telling passes for Rovers in the first half-hour.
Shackell showed his class when shielding the ball from Sharp in the box until it ran dead.
John Oster was starting to make his presence felt and he set up the lively Shiels only to see him shoot wide.
Barnsley striker Garry O’Connor got a shot on target from the edge of the area, but it was a weak effort.
The former Birmingham star did better when winning his side a corner. He seemed to fall awkwardly and needed treatment for a hand injury before being able to continue.
Rovers suffered a blow on the stroke of half-time when Wilson limped off with a hamstring. He was replaced by recent signing Paul Keegan, who came on for his debut.
A mistake by skipper Adam Lockwood almost let in Haynes in the closing stages of stoppage time.
The Reds started the second half with Jim O’Brien on for Kieren Trippier. The visitors made the running and Sullivan had to make saves from Collace’s header and Garry O’Connor’s angled shot before Barnsley took the lead in the 55th minute when Haynes headed home from right-back Bobby Hassell’s cross.
Rovers were fortunate not to find themselves 2-0 down four minutes later - Colace poking the ball wide from close rang.
It only proved to be a stay of execution, however, and the Reds effectively wrapped things up on the 67th minute with a second goal by Haynes.
The former Bristol City man got away down the right and then cut inside before unleashing an angled shot which Sullivan failed to hold and the ball trickled over the line.
Keegan just cleared the crossbar with thumping 25 yarder in the 75th minute as increasingly desperate Rovers looked for a way back into the game.
The nearest they came to a consolation goal was in stoppage time when James O’Connor headed over.