Santa Clara, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Chris Wondolowski's second-half strike was enough to lift the San Jose Earthquakes to a pivotal 1-0 victory over the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday at Buck Shaw Stadium.
San Jose needed a three-point effort on home soil to keep their playoff dreams alive, but failed to generate many offensive chances through the majority of the first half.
The 'Quakes best offensive opportunity came late in the period when Wondolowski got a glancing header toward goal, but it grazed the crossbar on its way over the net.
Colorado's best chance of the night came in the 59th minute when Edson Buddle got his head to a well-struck cross from Chris Klute, but it narrowly missed the far post.
San Jose then began to push numbers forward knowing they need the decisive goal and created a pair of glorious chances in close, but Rapids defender Drew Moor made a pair of spectacular goal-line clearances to keep things level.
The 'Quakes finally got the winner in the 69th minute when Shea Salinas served a perfect ball into the area and Wondolowski easily nodded it past Colorado goalkeeper Clint Irwin.
The result moves the 'Quakes to within one point of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference with two games remaining, while Colorado stays in fifth place on 48 points.