KENYA BROWN - Monday, April 16, 2018
Omar Gonzalez and Pachuca moved into the playoff places with their win over Jorge Villafana and Santos Laguna while William Yarbrough and Leon remained in contention.
Pachuca 3-1 Santos Laguna
Pachuca pushed themselves into the top eight following their comfortable win over a Santos Laguna at Estadio Hidalgo.
Gonzalez, who has been mostly a spectator during the Clausura season, started the game for Los Tuzos as the race tightens up for the playoff spots.
The host took the lead in the 25th minute when Gonzalez a through ball to teammate Keisuke Honda and the Japanese international curled his shot past Santos goalkeeper Jonathan Orozco into the top left corner of the goal.
Honda would then turn provider six minutes later to double Pachuca's lead when he played a through ball to Erik Aguirre on the left and he slotted the ball past Orozco.
Djaniny cut the deficit in the 39th minute when Jesus Isijara played the ball to him on the right and the Cape Verdean forward chipped the ball over Alfonso Blanco before it went into the goal.
However, Pachuca restored their two-goal lead in the 86th minute when Anyelo Sagal sent a low cross into the area and Sebastian Palacios one-timed his shot into the back of the net.
Pachuca moves up to eighth place in the standings with 21 points while Santos Laguna remains in second with 29 points.
Veracruz 1-2 Leon
Andres Andrade scored the game-winning goal to help Leon to the win over Veracruz at Estadio Luis de la Fuente to keep their playoff hopes alive.
Yarbrough made his return to the starting lineup after sitting out of the game last weekend.
The visitors opened the scoring two minutes before halftime when Luis Montes' cross from the left found teammate Mauro Boselli, who headed the ball into the back of the net from close range.
Veracruz would level the score in the 63rd minute when Richard Ruiz's deep pass into the area was headed on by Cristian Menendez, with the ball being placed well out of the reach of Yarbrough as it went into the goal.
However, Leon would have the last say in the game as Andrade bagged the winner in the 82nd minute. Elias Hernandez's shot from outside the area was blocked by a Veracruz defender, but the ball would fall at the feet of the Colombian forward and he took a crack from near the same spot and would not be denied the winner.
Leon sits in 12th place in the standings with 18 points, three points out of the playoff spots.
Tijuana 3-0 Guadalajara
The weekend turned out to be special one for Rubio Rubin as he scored his first goal for Tijuana in their comfortable win over Guadalajara at Estadio Caliente.
Rubin would come off the bench for Los Xolos while Michael Orozco watched all of the action.
The host did not waste any time as they took the lead in the seventh minute from the penalty spot as Miller Bolanos sent goalkeeper Miguel Jimenez the wrong way.
Tijuana were awarded another penalty just before halftime and went to double their lead as Gustavo Bou this stepped up to convert the shot successfully.
Rubin, who entered the game in the 73rd minute, rounded out the scoring in the 84th minute when he took a pass from Bolanos, rounded the goalkeeper and slotted the ball into the open net.
Tijuana sits in seventh place in the standings with 21 points.
Joe Corona watched from the bench as America played out a 0-0 tie with Monterrey.
Bernabe Magana watched from the bench as Pumas UNAM handed struggling Puebla a 4-2 defeat.
Lalo Fernandez watched from the bench as Tigres UANL shared the points with Cruz Azul following a 2-2 tie.