Madrid, Spain (SportsNetwork.com) - Cristiano Ronaldo scored on either side of the intermission on Saturday and Real Madrid hung on for a nervy 3-2 triumph over Rayo Vallecano at the Campo de Futbol de Vallecas.
After scoring a hat trick in a 7-3 thumping of Osasuna in midweek, Ronaldo got the visitors off the mark quickly as he netted his first goal of the match just three minutes in.
Madrid made it 2-0 through a goal from France international Karim Benzema and took the two-goal margin into the locker room.
After the break, Ronaldo completed his brace in the 48th minute to make it 3-0, but Rayo got back into the game with a pair of penalties from Jonathan Viera two minutes apart to make it 3-2 with 35 minutes to play.
Inspired by their quick comeback effort, Rayo generated several more scoring chances over the remainder of the match, but were never able to produce an equalizing goal as Los Blancos held on to claim an important three points away from home.
The result pulls Madrid within six points of Barcelona for the top spot in La Liga, while Rayo remains at the foot of the table with nine points.
Real Sociedad 5, Osasuna 0
San Sebastian, Spain - Five different players found the back of the net for Real Sociedad on Saturday as the club cruised to a comfortable 5-0 thrashing of Osasuna at the Anoeta.
Sociedad grabbed control of the match from the outset and never let go as they opened the scoring in the 33rd minute through Jon Ansotegui and took the lead into the break.
After the intermission, Sociedad poured it on and doubled its advantage in the 47th minute through Inigo Martinez before Osasuna went down to 10 men two minutes later as Jordan Loties was sent off.
Antoine Griezmann made it 3-0 for Sociedad before the hosts put the result to bed with a pair of goals inside the final 10 minutes from Gonzalo Irizabal and Haris Seferovic.
Almeria 1, Valladolid 0
Almeria, Spain - Almeria earned its second win in league play on Saturday after hanging on to claim a 1-0 result against Real Valladolid at the Estadio de los Juegos Mediterraneos.
The only goal of the day materialized in the 38th minute as Liverpool loanee Suso whipped a cross into the penalty area that was fired home by Rodri to put the hosts ahead.
Valladolid went in search of the equalizer in the second half, but went down a man 15 minutes from time after Patrick Ebert was shown a straight red card and the visitors never recovered.
The result moves Almeria to 19th place on nine points, one shy of safety, while Valladolid remains in 13th place.
Celta Vigo 1, Sevilla 0
Seville, Spain - Alex Lopez netted the only goal of the match on Saturday as Celta Vigo earned a 1-0 victory over Sevilla at the Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
Following a 3-0 setback against defending champions Barcelona last weekend, Celta Vigo responded nicely, coming out with more energy, attempting nine shots in the first half to Sevilla's three, but neither side could find a goal in the opening half.
The breakthrough came two minutes into the second period when Lopez ripped a strike from distance that beat Sevilla goalkeeper Beto for his third tally of the campaign.