On the heels of Slovenia’s first ever Olympic Tournament victory earlier in the day against Slovakia, the team from Latvia looked to make history of its own in its game against powerhouse Sweden on Saturday afternoon.
The Latvians put a scare into Sweden when Janis Sprukts put Latvia up 2-1 just 1:22 into the second period, but then the Swedes took over. Three second period goals by Sweden put the team up for good as they improved to 3-0 in the tournament with a 5-3 victory.
Daniel Alfredsson, Daniel Sedin and Erik Karlsson had two points a piece for Sweden which now finds itself in prime position for a berth into the tournament Quarterfinals.
Sweden opened the scoring in the opening period when Patik Berglund scored with just under five minutes remaining. Latvia’s Lauris Darzins would tie the game just three minutes later. Karlsson, Alfredsson and Jimmie Ericsson all scored in the second period after Sprukts scored for Latvia to make it 4-2 heading into the final frame.
Latvia was given a spark early in the third period when Zemgus Girgensons made it 4-3 with a powerplay goal, but a goal by Alexander Edler with less than eight minutes remaining killed any chance for a Latvian upset.
Latvia finishes group play 0-3, but still have at least one game remaining to get that elusive first win when they play in the playoff qualification round on Monday.