Armando Cooper struck in the third minute of added time to deny Wales victory in what could be boss Chris Coleman's final game in charge, as Panama snatched a 1-1 draw at the Cardiff City Stadium on Tuesday night.
The World-Cup bound visitors found a way through at the very death after falling behind to a Tom Lawrence strike 15 minutes from time, in what proved to be a frustrating night for the Dragons, who also missed a first-half penalty.
Coleman, due to continue talks over his future later this week, handed debuts to a number of players over the 90 minutes with an eye on the future and was so nearly rewarded with a morale-boosting victory to see out 2017.
The vastly experienced Jaime Penedo was well positioned to keep it out at the front post, though, proving to be a rare attempt on goal at either end of the field.
A Sam Vokes shot was then sent flying over the bar from 22 yards out, while Lawrence was let down by a heavy first touch inside the area after doing well to get away from two players in the build-up.
Luis Ovalle stuck out a leg to send Dave Edwards to the ground, though Vokes - one of the more experienced home players - was unable to get the better of Dinamo Bucharest keeper Penedo from the resulting penalty kick.
That would be Vokes's last real involvement in the game, as he was replaced by debutant Tom Lockyer for the second half, while another potential Wales star of the future in Lee Evans was also introduced for his first cap later in the second half.
Wales never truly got going after the restart, though, and it was Panama who came closest to scoring before the hour mark approached after Torres broke clear of Gunter.
The Lausanne-Sport striker was first denied by Danny Ward and then by a recovering Gunter, who was initially at fault for letting his opponent get in behind.
James Chester headed wide unmarked as Wales pressed for an opener, but the second half had a stop-start feel to it as two more debutants - Marley Watkins and Ryan Hedges - were next to be given an audition ahead of next year's China Cup appearance for the Dragons.
Wales did get their breakthrough goal with 75 minutes on the clock, however, as Lawrence weaved in from the left and sent the ball past the reach of Penedo for his second international goal.
There was a chance for Andrew Crofts to bag a late second, only to be thwarted by Penedo from range, and that save would prove crucial as Cooper kept his cool late on to find a way past Ward.