with midfielder Steve Ralston featuring once again at right back -- kept the Quakes at bay throughout most of the first half.
Noonan opened the scoring in the 25th, neatly heading a Richie Baker cross from eight yards past helpless Quakes 'keeper Pat Onstad.
San Jose's best chance of the half was denied by the head of Marshall Leonard minutes before the break, as Ching's header of a Jeff Agoos' corner kick was cleared away by the New England defender at Matt Reis' back post.
Out of the locker room, Cancela appeared to settle matters following a poor clearance by Todd Dunivant in the 54th minute, as the Uruguayan's left-footed shot from the top of the penalty area curled superbly past Onstad to give the visitors a 2-0 lead.
The Quakes' Ronnie Ekelund nearly responded with a goal seconds later, but the Danish midfielder's right-footed bid glanced off the upper corner of the woodwork. Agoos then had another chance to pull one back for the hosts on the hour mark, but his freekick from beyond 20 yards was plucked out of the air by Reis.
The home side appeared doomed in the 62nd minute, when Troy Dayak -- making his first start after missing several games to a back injury -- was shown the red card for an apparent elbow to the face of midfielder Shalrie Joseph.
The defender's dramatic exit from the field -- waving his shirt over his head to pump up the Quakes faithful -- was to that point one of the few highlights for the Spartan Stadium crowd, as the Quakes continued to struggle to find a proper scoring chance.
Second-half substitute Dwayne De Rosario then did hit the back of the net seven minutes later with a strike from inside the penalty area -- but instead of awarding a goal, first-year referee Andrew Chapin ruled Revs midfielder Joe Franchino had fouled Brian Mullan (warranting a yellow card) and the goal was disallowed.
But just as the announcement of injury time seemed to mark the end for the Quakes, Donovan ran on to Ching's backheel pass at the top of the area and slammed home his fourth goal of the season, cutting the lead in half.
The Quakes kept New England on the back foot as the final moments raced away, but in the fourth minute of added time, De Rosario's cross met Ching just inches away from the New England goal line and the Hawaiian native slid in to poke home his league-leading 10th goal of the year and give the Quakes an unlikely share of the points.
MLSnet.com Man of the Match: Ronnie Ekelund (San Jose Earthquakes)
New England Revolution (4-8-6) vs. San Jose Earthquakes (5-6-6)
July 24, 2004 -- Spartan Stadium
NE -- Pat Noonan 6 (Richie Baker 4) 25
NE -- Jose Cancela 3 (unassisted) 54
SJ -- Landon Donovan 4 (Brian Ching 3, Richard Mulrooney 8) 91+
SJ -- Brian Ching 10 (Dwayne De Rosario 3, Ronnie Ekelund 2) 94+
New England Revolution -- Matt Reis, Steve Ralston, Jay Heaps, Avery John, Marshall Leonard, Richie Baker (Andy Dorman 89), Jose Cancela, Shalrie Joseph, Joe Franchino, Pat Noonan, Taylor Twellman.
Substitutes Not Used: Perek Belleh, Daouda Kante, Luke Vercollone, Doug Warren.
TOTAL SHOTS: 8 (Pat Noonan 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 4 (4 tied with 1); FOULS: 17 (Joe Franchino 5); OFFSIDES: 3 (Taylor Twellman 2); CORNER KICKS: 1 (Jose Cancela 1); SAVES: 6 (Matt Reis 5)
San Jose Earthquakes -- Pat Onstad, Craig Waibel, Jeff Agoos, Troy Dayak, Todd Dunivant, Brian Mullan, Ronnie Ekelund, Richard Mulrooney, Ramiro Corrales (Dwayne De Rosario 65), Brian Ching, Landon Donovan.
Substitutes Not Used: Chris Brown, Ryan Cochrane, Jon Conway, Steve Cronin, Tighe Dombrowski, Wes Hart, Ian Russell.
TOTAL SHOTS: 18 (Brian Ching 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 8 (Brian Ching 3); FOULS: 17 (Brian Mullan 5); OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 10 (Richard Mulrooney 7); SAVES: 2 (Pat Onstad 2)
NE -- Steve Ralston (caution; Delaying a Restart) 62
SJ -- Troy Dayak (ejection; Serious Foul Play) 62
NE -- Joe Franchino (caution; Reckless Foul) 70
NE -- Shalrie Joseph (caution; Pushing, Holding) 79
SJ -- Richard Mulrooney (caution; Pushing, Holding) 79
NE -- Marshall Leonard (caution; Reckless Foul) 80
SJ -- Landon Donovan (caution; Dissent) 94+
Referee: Andrew Chapin
Referee's Assistants: Fabio Tovar; Jose Andrade
4th Official: Ricardo Valenzuela
Time of Game: 1:53
All Statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial.