Danny Mandroiu continued his red-hot start to life with the Imps with the winning goal as City extended their unbeaten run to five games.
Mandroiu struck in the closing stages of the first-half for his third goal in as many games after his strikes against Newcastle United U21 and Sheffield Wednesday.
The first chance came in the fourth minute as Barnsley’s Nicky Cadden crossed the ball low into the box, but Carl Rushworth was alert to hold onto the effort.
City’s first chance came in the ninth minute as Rushworth quickly threw out the ball to Jack Diamond who drove forward into Barnsley’s box and cut inside his man, but his effort agonisingly just clipped the outside of the left post.
In the 28th minute, City won a free-kick just outside the hosts’ box as Mandroiu was brought down. The Irishman took responsibility, but his effort hit the wall as he tried to curl the ball around it and went out for a throw-in.
The first corner of the match came in the 31st minute as James Norwood went for a shot which was blocked by Joe Walsh. City eventually cleared the corner and sent a long ball to Diamond who once again drove forward but as he tried to cross it a Barnsley defender was in the way.
The Tykes had another chance at goal six minutes later, as Herbie Kane shot from outside the area but his effort was wide of Rushworth’s right post.
Right before the break, Mandroiu fired the Imps into the lead as Diamond crossed the ball to
Mandroiu who got behind the Tykes’ defence and finished it left-footed into a bottom corner.
City started the second half by winning a corner following a shot from Diamond which was blocked by a Barnsley defender. The Imps took a short corner which lead to Max Sanders’ first attempt on goal, but Brad Collins was in the right place and saved.
Barnsley threatened again in the 54th minute as Josh Martin crossed low towards Norwood, but the delivery was ahead of the striker and the Imps were able to clear it.
In the 60th minute there was another chance for the Imps as Diamond crossed the ball to Ben House who ran behind the Barnsley defence and sent the ball into the area, but the ball was just ahead of Mandroiu and the hosts were able to clear.
Rushworth was busy in the 67th minute following a free-kick for the hosts outside the box which created several chances for Barnsley before the Imps eventually cleared the ball.
Regan Poole almost added another for the Imps following a corner in the 82nd minute, but his effort went over the crossbar.
A few minutes after it was House’s turn for another go at goal as he was played through by Charles Vernam, who had come off the bench, but his shot went just wide of the right post.
Imps: Carl Rushworth, Regan Poole ©, Max Sanders (Lasse Sørensen 82’), Paudie O’Connor, Joe Walsh, Ben House, Danny Mandroiu (Charles Vernam 83’), TJ Eyoma, Sean Roughan, Matty Virtue, Jack Diamond (Jordon Garrick 69’).
Subs (not used): Jordan Wright, Jamie Robson, Adam Jackson, Freddie Draper.
Goals: Danny Mandroiu (45+3’).
Barnsley: Brad Collins, Tom Edwards, Liam Kitching, Mads Andersen ©, Nicky Cadden (Ziyad Larkeche 88’), Herbie Kane (Adam Phillips 65’), James Norwood, Josh Benson (Fabio Jalo 88’), Josh Martin, Robbie Cundy (Jack Aitchison 75’), Devante Cole.
Subs (not used): Jack Walton, Jasper Moon, Luca Connell
Referee: James Oldham.
Attendance: 10,397 (1,231 away).