SOCHI -- For 59 minutes and 52 seconds, Latvia fought Switzerland evenly in its Group C preliminary round opener Wednesday at Shayba Arena.
Then disaster struck.
Latvia forward Lauris Darzins was injured behind the Swiss net, slow to get up after a hit into the boards appeared to hurt his right arm. Then another forward on the half wall made a high-risk play to keep possession and was not rewarded for his initiative as Switzerland gained possession and moved up the ice.
Still, with 10 seconds left it appeared Latvia would weather one final storm and force the 2013 IIHF World Championship silver medalist into overtime. Only it wasn't meant to be. Simon Moser found the puck on his stick behind the Latvian net, tried to pass it to Nino Niederreiter in the slot but instead watched as it rolled up the stick of goalie Edgars Masalskis, bounced off the body of Latvian defenseman Georgijs Pujacs and trickled into the net with 7.9 seconds remaining.
Just like that the Swiss escaped, taking a 1-0 victory in the game's last gasp.