Elche's hopes of tying up promotion this weekend took a minor set-back when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Barcelona B on Friday night, although they still only need one win from their next four matches to go up. True to the style that has seen them dominate the table from the opening day, Fran Escribá's side sat back and allowed their opponents the majority of possession. Midway through the first half they went in front, Edu Albácar scoring from the penalty spot after Edgar Ié brought down Coro inside the area. But twenty minutes after the restart they were left with ten men when Damian Suárez brought down Deulofeu as he advanced on goal, and with ten minutes to go Espinosa silenced the 34,000 crowd when he latched on to the ball on the edge of the area to fire the equaliser past Manu. (10.05.13)
Elche's draw on Friday took them a step closer to going up, but the other direct promotion spot is now wide open after second placed Girona were surprisingly beaten 2-4 by bottom club Xerez on Saturday evening. The Andalusians had not won in 25 games, but they took the lead with just under a quarter of an hour gone when a slip by Dani Mallo allowed Marquitos to fire the ball back in to the net. Jofre made it all square with a low shot from the edge of the area, but Marquitos got his second of the day after running on to return pass from Bruno Herrero, and Jose Vegar made it three before the break after Herrero put him through. A minute after the restart Lucas Porcar scored a fourth after Mallo could only push out a Marquitos cross, and although Felipe Sanchón got another one back from the penalty spot with a quarter of an hour to go after Porcar blocked a free kick with his arm, and Raúl Cámara got himself sent off soon afterwards, the visitors held fast for a win which at least restores them a bit of their lost pride.
Girona are now just two points ahead of Alcorcón, who meet Villarreal on Sunday, and Almería, who beat Lugo 3-5 in another high scoring match. Iago Díaz opened the scoring with just over half an hour gone after Esteban could only push out a shot from Oscar Díaz, but Christian headed in a Corona free kick to level the scores on the stroke of half time. Four minutes after the restart Falqué slid in Christian's centre to put the visitors in front, and Charles turned in a cross from the right wing to make it three a few minutes later. Manu got one back from the penalty spot after Charles handled the ball in the area following a corner, but Calvo charged down José Juan's clearance to restore the two goal cushion soon afterwards. With five minutes to go Iván Pérez got a third for the locals after a mix up between Trujillo and Esteban, but Aleix Vidal wrapped things up when he ran through to beat José Juan in injury time.
The last play-off spot would appear to be between Las Palmas and Ponferradina, both of whom played out scoreless draws on Saturday. Las Palmas drew 0-0 at struggling Huesca, a result which keeps them two points ahead of the Castilla-León based side in the table. The Canary Islanders had the better chances, but debutant keeper Zabal made some important saves, in particular one in each half from Thievy. Ponferradina failed to take advantage after they too could only draw 0-0 at Mirandés. They have Santamaría to thank for even saving a point though, the visiting keeper stopping Pedro, Sergio Suárez and others as the home side came looking for a win which would take them clear of the relegation zone.
Córdoba's chances of catching Las Palmas virtually ended after they lost 3-0 at Sporting Gijón. The Asturians themselves had already given up hope of a play-off spot after three defeats in a row, but they took the lead in only the second minute when Carmona beat Alberto García with a shot from the edge of the area. With ten minutes to go to the break Guerrero got the second after the visiting keeper could only push out an effort by David Rodríguez, and after the restart Juan Muñoz hit the bar before Guerrero put Santi Jara through to score the third. Xisco did head against the bar near the end, but otherwise the Andalusians caused few problems for Cuéllar, and they ended the day nine points off the play-off spots.
Further down the table Murcia stay in the bottom four, still two points behind eighteenth placed Mirandés, after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Sabadell. Collantes opened the scoring for the Catalans on the half hour mark, and although substitute Cristian García made it all square early in the second half, Onésimo's side had to settle for a disappointing point. Sabadell are virtually safe though, and Numancia and Guadalajara are also heading that way after they drew 2-2. The locals twice took the lead, Juanma heading in a wide free kick in the sixth minute and Del Pino scoring with a spectacular volley on the hour mark, but both times Vicente struck to peg them back, the first a long run before the break and the second with an angled shot a few minutes from the end. (11.05.13)
Villarreal are closing in on the second of the direct promotion spots, and a 1-3 victory at third placed Alcorcón on Sunday lunchtime left their fate in their own hands. Marcelino's team started the match three points behind their opponents in the table, but they took the lead early on when Uche beat Manu Fernández after a series of rebounds. Bruno headed a corner in off the crossbar to make it two a few minutes before the break, and although Sergi Enrich headed one back in the second half, Canteros wrapped things up with an individualist goal in the dying minutes. Villarreal face second placed Girona next Sunday, and a win in the Madrigal stadium will take them up to second. Elche though celebrated today's result more than anyone, Alcorcón's defeat meaning they only need one point in their last four games to go up.
Later in the evening Racing Santander kept their hopes of survival alive with a 1-0 win over Real Madrid Castilla. The Cantabrians started the day eight points away from safety after a run of four defeats in a row, and although they dominated ther first half, the scoreline remained unmoved at the break. The visitors were left with ten men though when Cheryshev was shown a straight red card after hitting Francis on the nose on the stroke of half time, and Ferriero got was to prove the only goal after winning the ball in midfield and running on to beat Mejías on the hour mark. Koné and Assulín missed chances to increase the lead, but there were some nervous moments for the home fans before the final whistle, with Borja in particular going close. (12.05.13)
One game on Monday evening in the second division, with Hércules moving further away from the danger zone after a 0-2 victory at Recreativo. It had been more than 25 years since the last time the Alicante based side won in Huelva, but after a run of nine games without defeat they were full of confidence, and with ten minutes on the clock Eldin put them in front after Edu Bedía set him up. Portillo had a strike ruled out before the break and then hit the post in the second half, but Falcón had to make a couple of important saves before Sardinero put the game beyond the Andalusians' reach following a corner with just two minutes to go. The win takes Quique Hernández'a side to within a point of their hosts in the table, now six points above the bottom four. (13.05.13)