Lawrence strikes with last kick to give Town a point
Tom Lawrence’s goal with the last kick of the game stretched Town’s unbeaten run to eight games.
Marley Watkins, reported to be a target of Blues back in August, showed why he is in demand by holding off the Town defence to slide the ball past Bart Bialkowski just before the hour to give the home side the lead.
It looked enough to give Barnsley the points but Brett Pitman sent one last cross into the box and Lawrence got around the back to grab an equaliser and make it six draws in succession for Blues.
Emyr Huws returned to the Town side after recovering from a hamstring injury that kept him out of the draw with Wolves in one of three changes, Jordan Spence and Toumani Diagouraga also coming in.
Christophe Berra thumped a header just wide at the near post from a corner in the game’s first forward foray, Bart Bialkowski having the first save to make soon after to deny Adam Armstrong from the edge of the box.
Marc Roberts hacked Huws’ cross over his own crossbar, while at the other Watkins cut inside down the right but his cross beat everyone and drifted to safety.
Armstrong headed over after a flowing Barnsley move saw Matty James volley at goal from Adam Hammill’s cross, Berra then conceded a foul on Tom Bradshaw on the angle of the box, Andy Yiadom pulling his shot well over from 20 yards.
Lawrence’s trickery won Town a corner, the ball broke to David McGoldrick and his shot forced a save from Adam Davies, Cole Skuse was quickest to the rebound but the ‘keeper smothered the follow up shot.
Bialkowski saved comfortably from Armstrong, Angus MacDonald headed over from a free-kick, James then seeing his shot blocked on the edge of the box as the Tykes enjoyed a flurry of activity around the Town goal.
Armstrong fizzed a 30 yarder just over the bar after Yiadom, not for the first time had supported from full-back, Berra then clearing a goalmouth scramble.
Josh Scowen fired over from Hammill’s set-up, Hammill’s free-kick then falling to James but the midfielder couldn’t control his volley before Town were inches away from an opener just before the break. David McGoldrick’s run was too good for the Barnsley defence and his cross found Lawrence but a Tykes foot deflected the ball behind.
James’ header forced an early second-half corner for the home side, Lawrence eventually clearing the danger, Berra then staying strong to halt Watkins’ powerful run.
Grant Ward replaced Diagouraga in Town’s first change, McGoldrick denied at the far post as he looked to get in on Myles Kenlock’s cross.
Ward’s shot was deflected wide for a corner, McGoldrick first to the delivery and Luke Chambers was inches away from getting on the end of his header but seconds later, on 58 minutes, the deadlock was broken, Watkins bursting clear and showing pace and power before nudging the ball past Bialkowski.
Hammill won a free-kick on the edge of the box, the midfielder’s effort hitting the wall as Barnsley looked for a second, Freddie Sears then joining the action just past the hour. Kenlock making way.
McGoldrick had a shot blocked after Sears and Ward had combined down the right, James responding for the Tykes with a volley just wide from 25 yards.
Lawrence blasted a shot straight at Davies as Town searched for an equaliser but Blues needed Bialkowski at his best to prevent a second for the Tykes when Hammill was sent clear on goal by substitute Ryan Williams.
Pitman replaced Huws in Town’s final change as the clocked ticked down and it was his delivery in added on time that saw Lawrence grab his 11th goal of the season.
Barnsley: Davies, Jones, Yiadom, Roberts, MacDonald, Scowen, Hammill, Watkins, James, Bradshaw, Armstrong (Williams 78) Subs not used: Townsend, Moncur, Jackson, Mowatt, Hedges, Kent.
Town: Bialkowksi, Spence, Chambers, Berra, Knudsen, Kenlock (Sears 62), Skuse, Diagouraga (Ward 53), Huws (Pitman 82), Lawrence, McGoldrick. Subs not used: Gerken, Smith, Bru, Moore. Booked: Skuse.