Barry 1 Druids 3
Second half fightback bags points for visitors
It was a textbook game of two halves at Jenner Park on Saturday, as Barry Town United were sunk by a strong Cefn Druids side in the JD Welsh Premier League.
Unbeaten in their three previous fixtures, the home side started well, bolstered by the selection of top goalscorer Kayne McLaggon, who had pulled up with an injury in the goalless draw at Aberystwyth Town, seven days earlier.
As in their previous outing, full-back Paul Morgan serve as an effective creator; his low ball from the right expertly latched onto by Drew Fahiya, after a fine run into space.
However, Fahiya's final shot from eight yards would hit the Druids post, denying the former Welsh Cup finalist forward what would have been a well-worked opener.
It would take only minutes for ex-Southampton man McLaggon to break the deadlock; Fahiya turning supplier before his teammate finished off a neat move to bag his sixth of the season.
Then, it was McLaggon's turn to provide, knocking the ball to outstretched teammate Fahiya for a turning strike, that would ultimately run a yard or two off target.
A goal to the good at half-time, signs were positive that the Town could record a fourth consecutive win at Jenner Park and three out of three in the league.
The Druids though had different ideas, battling their way back into the game and threatening to level when Ashley Ruane's strike cannoned off the crossbar.
Before long, a deep corner was headed into the path of Lewis Buckley, who twisted and struck a left-footed effort beyond Mike Lewis and into the Barry net.
At one apiece, the tide of the match appeared to be turning, with the Druids unafraid to commit to some physical challenges as the second half progressed.
Trying to shrug off an eye injury following one collision, McLaggon almost restored Barry's lead, but his side-footed finish flew inches high of the stanchion.
Later, his replacement Louis Gerrard would race clear of the defence, but his attempt to lob the goalkeeper from a one-on-one was misjudged over the bar.
With eyes on the clock, the Jenner Park fans were encouraged by the return of striker Jordan Cotterill, after an injury lay-off that stretched back as far as May.
However, the Druids were not done and, after Lewis had made an outstanding stop to keep the score 1-1, the North Walians found their breakthrough.
Uncharacteristically, it was again a corner that saw Barry come undone; Ruane stabbing the ball home, after Chris Hugh had blocked on the goal line.
Deflated and soon to be defeated, the Town then saw Buckley add insult to injury in stoppage time, scoring Druids' third from a rebound, after his prior shot hit the post.
For Huw Griffiths' men, it was an excellent result; one that sees them leap into fifth, after former leaders Llandudno were upset by bottom-placed Abersytwyth.
For Barry meanwhile, an opportunity for redemption awaits this Saturday, when they make the difficult journey to Welsh Cup holders Bala Town (2.30pm).
The JD Welsh Premier League fixture at Maes Tegid will be the first in history between the two clubs; with Bala enjoying a ninth season in the national top flight, under long-serving manager Colin Caton.