Squaw Valley ’60 : McCartan Was Majestic For Golden US

The 3-2 victory over the Soviet Union by the United States at Squaw Valley in 1960 is probably better remembered than the US win over Canada that year because a) it was the second last US game b) the contest was televised nationally on a Saturday afternoon and c) the Cold War Era was in full swing.

The 3-2 victory over the Soviet Union by the United States at Squaw Valley in 1960 is probably better remembered than the US win over Canada that year because a) it was the second last US game b) the contest was televised nationally on a Saturday afternoon and c) the Cold War Era was in full swing.

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The 1960 Olympic ice hockey tournament was projected to be a tussle between defending champions.

Canada arrived in California having won the 1959 IIHF World Championships in Czechoslovakia. The Soviet Union, meanwhile, had captured the last Olympic gold medal in 1956 at their first attempt.

It was the unheralded United States squad, however, who had stolen the show by the time the Olympic curtain came down in 1960.

The de facto gold medal match at the 1960 Squaw Valley Games came in the middle of the final round when the U.S. (7-0) faced off against Canada (6-1).

The Canadians, who featured the tournament’s two top scorers in Fred Etcher (9 go 12 as) and Bobby Attersley (6 go 12 as), would launch no less than 39 shots on target for the American goal.

But JACK MCCARTAN, the former University of Minnesota All-American on loan from the U.S. Army, turned aside 38 of those in what was certainly the 24-year-old’s signature performance at Squaw Valley as the United States nipped Canada 2-1.

It ranks as one of the best Olympic goaltending efforts of all time.

McCartan, who later played briefly with the New York Rangers before embarking on a long career in the minor leagues, followed that act up with 25 saves for the United States in the nationally-televised 3-2 win over the USSR, who ended up with the bronze medal.

The United States, powered by six unanswered third period goals, downed Czechoslovakia 9-4 in their final game to collect the gold medal.

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