The Spanish striker’s league-leading fifth goal put Valencia ahead at El Molinon stadium at the half-hour mark.
Real Madrid and Real Betis can draw even with Valencia with wins on Sunday.
Also, Ikechukwu Uche’s second-half header lifted the promoted Granada 1-0 over Villarreal for its first victory in Spain’s top division in 35 years.
Martin Demichelis headed in Santi Cazorla’s pass six minutes before halftime as Malaga won 1-0 at Mallorca.
Barcelona hosts Osasuna later Saturday and Real Sociedad is at Sevilla.