Chesterfield manager Paul Cook hailed the 2-1 victory as a reward for sheer hard work after a double from top goalscorer Eoin Doyle floored Barnsley.Doyle's quality in the penalty area proved the difference, but Cook recognised the effort his players put in was also a big factor in Chesterfield's first league win since 4th October.
There had been few clear chances until Doyle pounced on a flicked header from Sam Clucas in the 42nd minute and coolly lobbed Barnsley goalkeeper Ross Turnbull from 12 yards.
Barnsley were starting to threaten when Doyle struck again in the 58th minute.
A long ball from Charlie Raglan allowed Doyle to create space on the left edge of the box before firing low into the bottom corner.
Chesterfield had some anxious moments as Barnsley pressed, but goalkeeper Tommy Lee was in top form and Keith Treacy's close-range finish at the back post in the 85th minute came too late to change the game.
"We studied Barnsley and how they play," Cook said. "They hurt every team they play against, but we restricted them to very few chances and that was down to our work ethic out of possession.
"One thing our players do is they don't leave much on the pitch and I thought that was very evident for everyone to see.
"I thought we were excellent and the goals from Eoin Doyle were top drawer, the finishing was top class.
"But there were a lot of good performances out there and I thought we deserved the victory.
"When you have the calibre of players Barnsley have got, you need all of your players to play well to get a result."