MADRID — Forward Raul de Tomas scored a hat trick to lead Rayo Vallecano to a 4-2 win over Celta Vigo on Friday, boosting its chances of escaping the Spanish league’s relegation zone.
After he curled in a free kick in the fourth minute, Celta equalized through defender Nestor Araujo and took the lead in the 18th through striker Maxi Gomez’s penalty.
De Tomas made it 2-2 in the 37th, after a video review overturned an initial offside call, and then volleyed home a pass in the 77th.
Substitute Bebe netted the fourth in stoppage time.
The 24-year-old De Tomas came up through Real Madrid’s youth teams. He scored 24 goals for Rayo in the second division last season to help it earn promotion back to the topflight. He now leads Rayo — a small Madrid-based club — with eight league goals this campaign.
Rayo has won three matches in a row and is in 18th place.
"We had been playing well but not getting the results to show for it. Now our work is paying off," De Tomas said. "The teams ahead of us now know that Rayo is in the fight."
A third straight loss put Celta in 14th place ahead of this weekend’s matches.