Though Slovakia was able to carry over the jump shown in the final minutes of the first period, it was Latvia who managed to get on the board first Tuesday night in Calgary.
Minutes after Latvian goaltender Kristers Gudlevis turned aside Slovakia's second 3-on-1 attempt of the game, Juris Ziemins put Latvia up, 1-0.
The puck careened off the end boards, under the stick of Slovak goalie Juraj Simboch
and onto the stick of Ziemins, who lifted it top corner at 6:41 to give Latvia its first lead of the tournament.
The combination of 2012 Draft eligible forward Zemgus Girgensons and David Straupe almost made it 2-0 on the next shift.
Taking the puck out of the corner and driving to the net, Girgensons was stopped by the Slovak goalie. Straupe slid the rebound just passed the far post, keeping Slovakia within one.
After stopping Vladimir Dolnik
on a breakaway, Slovakia finally solved Gudlevis on the power play. Tomas Jurco
deflected Martin Marincin
's blast from the point behind Gudlevis with 4:32 remaining in the period to make it 1-1.