SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Caleb Folan converted his second penalty kick of the year and Jeff Larentowicz scored off a set piece in the Colorado Rapids' 2-1 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday night.
The Rapids (10-6-10) took advantage of the 50th-minute ejection of San Jose midfielder Sam Cronin to extend their unbeaten streak to five.
Larentowicz broke a tie in the 72nd minute, walking onto a stationary ball that had been touched dead off a short free kick. Larentowicz's low shot from 25 yards skipped through the legs of San Jose midfielder Simon Dawkins and off the hand of goalkeeper Jon Busch before reaching the net.
Folan brought Colorado (10-6-10) even in the 39th minute when Cronin was whistled for a handball after his arm deflected a cross from Colorado captain Pablo Mastroeni.
Despite Joey Gjertsen's goal in the 22nd minute, San Jose (5-9-10) saw its franchise-record winless streak reach 11 straight games.
Gjertsen put San Jose ahead when he used a wide-open header to clean up the rebound of Chris Wondolowski's deflected shot. Colorado goalkeeper Matt Pickens did a great job to parry a left-footed stab by Wondolowski, but Rapids defender Kosuke Kimura allowed Gjertsen to perch unmarked at the back post, where he tallied his first goal since May 8, 2010.
The Earthquakes couldn't hold the lead until halftime, however. Mastroeni earned the penalty by running onto a lead pass from Larentowicz and cutting a low pass off the end line. Cronin slid in an attempt to block the pass with his body, but the ball caught his trailing left arm instead.
Folan beat Busch for his fifth goal of the season.
Cronin was shown a straight red card for a two-footed tackle on Mastroeni as both players went for a loose ball in midfield.
San Jose almost regained the lead despite Cronin's absence when Gjertsen threaded a low pass to Wondolowski at the edge of the 6-yard box in the 55th minute. But Wondolowski, San Jose's leading scorer, popped his shot over the crossbar.