A goal out of nothing from Alan Gordon, his first for San Jose, salvaged a draw for the host side, but the 'Quakes' winless run stretched to double digits.
The Earthquakes poured forward at first, with Bobby Convey being given freedom to roam and create in an attempt to spark an offense that had been shut out in seven of its past nine games. It was Joey Gjertsen, though, who had a great look, as he brought down a cross-field ball from Ramiro Corrales and shed his defender in the process, only to fire right at Troy Perkins, who turned it behind for a corner.
The Earthquakes were made to pay for that missed chance minutes later, as Perlaza got well ahead of Jason Hernandez down the right side and crossed for Kenny Cooper. The big striker was left totally unmarked and easily finished to put the visitors up 1-0. The home side had a golden chance to respond when Perkins tipped over a cross from the left, which fell to Chris Wondolowski, but the reigning Golden Boot winner couldn't put it on target.
In the second half, Perlaza's pace continued to trouble the San Jose defense, but seemingly out of nothing the home side was right back in it through new signing Alan Gordon. Steven Beitashour swung in a cross from the right flank and Gordon redirected past a sprawling Perkins.
The goal changed the momentum of the game, as the Earthquakes pressed on for that vital win. However, it wouldn't come despite some heavy pressure, and even with a second yellow issued to Portland's Jeremy Hall in the 90th minute, the Earthquakes were unable to force the issue.