After a slow start from both teams in Calgary, Latvia and Slovakia managed to find their feet in a competitive first period that was scoreless despite a combined 25 shots.
It took Latvia until the 7:27 mark to mark its first shot on goal on Slovak starter Juraj Simboch
, while Slovakia managed to get just two pucks on Latvia's Kristers Gudlevskis in the first half of the period.
Though it took them longer than they'd like to record their first shot of the game, the Latvians carried the pace through the first 20 minutes.
Robert Lipsbergs, who had a pair of goals in Latvia's opener against Sweden, almost put his country up near the midway mark of the first. Streaking in on his off wing, Lipsbergs fired a shot off the pad Slovakia starter Juraj Simboch
, gathered his own rebound, but was denied again.
When Slovak defenseman Peter Bezuska misplayed the puck at the offensive blue line, Latvian captain Kristians Pelss
was able to break in alone on Simboch, who also denied him with his pad, one of 12 first period saves.
Killing its third penalty of the period, Slovakia responded.
Stepping out of the penalty box with four minutes remaining in the period, Tomas Matousek
jumped into a 3-on-1 rush led by Richard Mraz. Mraz dropped the puck to Matousek in the high slot, but was denied by Kristers Gudlevskis.