After three consecutive defeats in the Skrill Premier, Barnet needed a win. They managed to get it at The Hive with a 1-0 victory against Alfreton Town but the Bees certainly had to work hard to claim the three points.
A stunning goal from Dani Lopez, who was playing the final game of his loan spell, proved the difference between the two sides and halted the Bees’ small slide down the table.
There were two changes to the Barnet side which started the defeat at Luton Town on New Year’s Day.
In came goalkeeper Nick Jupp for the injured Graham Stack while Keanu Marsh-Brown was also absent and was replaced by Kieran Cadogan.
There was an early chance for the Bees as Luisma Villa was brought down on the edge of the penalty area.
He took the resultant free kick and his effort cleared the wall but just missed Jon Worsnop’s left hand post.
The majority of the opening 45 minutes lacked quality. The ball spent most of the time in midfield and neither team could fashion clear chances.
Jupp, who was making his first start for Barnet, dealt with the several crosses Alfreton put into his area and wasn’t forced into a meaningful stop.
Barnet struggled to break down the visiting defence and Jake Hyde looked isolated for much of the half.
Lopez had found it difficult to impose himself in the match but, five minutes before the interval, he fired the Bees ahead.
The Spaniard collected a pass 25 yards from goal, pushed the ball out of his feet and curled a sumptuous shot into the net via the crossbar.
Arguably neither side deserved to be ahead at the interval but the Bees looked to build on their advantage in the second period.
Mark Byrne began to get into threatening positions and he headed wide before sending a low shot into the arms of Worsnop.
Lopez then sliced an effort from distance well off target but Byrne came close with a low strike which just went wide.
Barnet had shown more attacking intent in the second half and they fashioned a clear chance to double their lead.
A neat pass from Villa put Hyde through on goal. Worsnop rushed off his line but the Bees striker clipped his shot past the visiting keeper but watched as the ball drifted agonisingly wide.
Alfreton appeared to tire as the game progressed and that allowed Barnet’s creative players more time on the ball.
Andy Yiadom almost grabbed the second goal as he weaved his way into the penalty area only for his well struck shot to be deflected wide.
Alfreton looked out of ideas as they searched for an equaliser and the reliable centre-back partnership of David Stephens and Jack Saville protected their goal stoutly.
Barnet introduced Harry Crawford late on and he fashioned a good chance for Cadogan but the winger’s low strike from inside the area was well stopped by the alert Worsnop.
Villa then whipped the ball wide of the post after another counter attack from the home side.
Saville suffered a late head injury in stoppage time as he was knocked out whilst defending a free kick from the visitors.
However, he was able to rejoin play and helped Barnet see out the game and secure victory.
Barnet: Jupp, Yiadom, Stephens, Saville, Johnson; Weston, Byrne; Cadogan (Abdulla 90), Lopez (Crawford 85), Villa (Vilhete 90); Hyde.
Barnet substitutes: Acheampong, Barnes.
Alfreton Town: Worsnop, Wood, Rowe-Turner, Poku, Wylde (Wishart 55), Kempson, Westwood, Akinde, Bradley (Law 64), Meadows (Shaw 59), Franklin.
Alfreton Town substitutes: Fenton, McFadzean.