Nick Rimando made three saves as Real Salt Lake (14-11-4, 46 points) improved to 9-1-1 in its past 11 home matches to salvage a split of the season series. The Earthquakes won the first meeting after Danny Hoesen scored a dramatic stoppage-time winner in a 1-0 victory at San Jose on July 6.
Daniel Vega finished with five saves Wednesday for the Earthquakes (13-11-5, 44 points), who have lost a season-high four in a row on the road overall and fell to 0-3-3 in their past six trips to Real Salt Lake.
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RSL moved into second place in the Western Conference, level on points with the Seattle Sounders but with a better goal difference. The Quakes are in fifth place.
Kreilach was thwarted on a number of point-blank opportunities in the contest before opening the scoring after out jumping San Jose's Anibal Godoy to convert defender Brooks Lennon's cross. Kreilach's goal was his fifth of the season while the assist was Lennon's first goal or assist of 2019.
Vega made a stellar save to preserve a scoreless draw in the 35th minute, as he stood his ground to make a kick save on a header from the center of the box on Kreilach.
Kreilach's bid for redemption in the 45th minute was also denied by Vega's save near the right post.
San Jose also had its chances, perhaps none better than Florian Jungwirth's attempt from the center of the box in the 61st minute. Jungwirth gained possession among three defenders in the middle of the box before his shot from point-blank range sailed wide of the left post.
Kreilach wasn't done, as he collected Everton Luiz's feed before unleashing a shot that sailed wide in the 65th minute.
San Jose's Chris Wondolowski's left-footed shot from the left side of the box was denied by Rimando in the 20th minute.
Damir Kreilach puts RSL in front of the Quakes
Major League Soccer: Damir Kreilach (75') Real Salt Lake 1-0 San Jose Earthquakes. To watch MLS sign up to ESPN+.
RSL climb to 2nd in the West with win over Quakes
Damir Kreilach's late header was all Real Salt Lake needed to beat the San Jose Earthquakes and leap into secon the Western confrerence. To watch MLS sign up to ESPN+.