Second Division - Day 32

A big, big 3-0 win for leaders Xerez against second placed Hércules on Saturday evening. Momo started things off with the opening goal in the tenth minute, and took advantage of a bad clearance by Calatayud to add a second on the half hour mark. The keeper had to be replaced by Unai Alba before the break after picking up an injury, but his replacement could only push out a shot on a quick breakaway ten minutes in to the second half, and Calle took advantage to make it three. The result ends a run of eight games without defeat for the visitors, and takes the Andalusians four points clear of their opponents in the table.

Zaragoza looked like they were on their way to second spot after Jorge López headed them in to the lead on the stroke of half time at Castellón. Arizmendi could have extended the lead when he hit the post after the restart, but in the fourth minute of injury time Pulido brought down N'Sue in the area, and Ulloa converted the resulting penalty to save a 1-1 draw for his team. Marcelino's side ended the day a point off the promotion spots.

A similar fate for Real Sociedad at their struggling neighbours Eibar, their match also ending 1-1 after Alaña converted a penalty seven minutes from the end when Mikel González was sent off for a foul on Markel Robles. Aranburu put the visitors in front in the eighth minute from Abreu's headed pass, and local keeper Zigor had to save from Abreu and Necati late on to prevent their rivals from restoring the lead.

Another penalty in Girona, where Felipe's spot kick shortly before the interval following a foul by Lillo on Arnal was enough to give the locals a 1-0 win over Murcia. The Catalans ended with ten men after José picked up a second yellow card with twenty minutes to go, but they held on for their first victory in eleven games.

Girona's regional neighbours Gimnàstic were held to a 0-0 draw by Las Palmas, who stay five points above the drop zone as a result. Marcos Márquez brought a couple of good saves out of local keeper Rubén Pérez and Redondo and Bauzà went close at the other end, but otherwise it was a dull match.

Alavés could only draw 1-1 at bottom club Sevilla Atlético, and they are stay down in the relegation spots for another week. Cuevas gave the Vitoria based side the lead on the half hour mark after controlling pass from Emilio Sánchez, but Fali equalised for the Andalusians on the stroke of half time after picking up a through ball from Coto. (11.04.09)

Tenerife consolidate second spot after a 5-1 victory over Levante on Sunday lunchtime, and they stay just a point behind Xerez. Richi picked up Juanlu's pass to open the scoring on the half hour mark, and although Del Moral headed one back a minute later, Richi restored the lead with his second of the day shortly before the break. Alfaro and Nino added to the lead with goals either side of half time, and Alfaro wrapped things up in injury time to make it thirteen games without defeat for the Canary Islanders.

Later in the day Rayo Vallecano beat Huesca 0-1 to move up level with third placed Hércules, behind the Alicante based side on goal difference but with a better head-to-head record, which is what counts at the end of the season. Neither side particularly troubled either keeper throughout, but with a draw seemingly on the cards and the game already in injury time, Piti beat Miguel with a shot from outside of the area to take the three points.

Further down the table Celta beat Córdoba 1-0 to give Eusebio his first victory since taking over six weeks ago. Both sides started the day level on points just a couple of spots above the bottom four, but a goal from Ghilas in the first minute of the second half after Renán and Fabiano Lima combined to set him up was enough to clock up a much needed win.

Albacete also moved away from the danger zone with a 2-1 victory over Elche. The visitors took the lead first though when Santos lobbed Cabrero from the edge of the area in the sixth minute. But Jonathan Soriano replied with a similar goal a few minutes later, and Diego Costa headed the winner midway through the second half to save the head of coach Juan Ignacio Martínez.

Alicante seemed doomed though after they could only draw 0-0 with Salamanca, and they ended the weekend eight points away from safety. It was a game full of mistakes though, with Miku missing the best chance to give the visitors the three points when he failed to beat Queco Piña ten minutes from the end. (12.04.09)