Move over Jim Craig.
Make room for Maddie Rooney.
The 20-year-old goalie earned her place in United States hockey history on Thursday in PyeongChang, not only for her stellar shootout performance but for also making an unreal save in overtime.
How close was the greatest win in U.S. women’s hockey history from not happening? Well, when Rebecca Johnston of Canada got the puck on her stick with 1:12 left in overtime it looked like Canada would extend its gold medal streak to five straight Olympics and leave the Americans brokenhearted again. The Canadians were on a late power play, the left side of the net was wide open and all Johnston had to do was send it home.
Rooney, though, had other ideas. She somehow moved to her right quickly enough to get just a small piece of the puck and it deflected just wide of the net. Both Johnston and teammate Brianne Jenner raised their hands in celebration, only to see they’d been thwarted.
A short while later, Rooney stopped four of Canada’s six shootout attempts for a 3-2 United States victory and the country’s first gold medal since the inaugural Olympic tournament in 1998.
Rooney was soon feted on Twitter and by an eager Wikipedia editor who named her the country’s new secretary of defense (sorry Jim Mattis).
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) February 22, 2018
Meanwhile, Craig, the goalie on the Miracle On Ice team, sent out his own congratulations that pointed out a great coincidence.
— Jim Craig (@JimCraigUSA) February 22, 2018
Calling that save “Maddie’s miracle” sure has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?
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• The Olympics’ worst skier might be the most inspiring
• Ivanka to represent U.S. at Olympic Closing Ceremony
• Canadian women suffer historic curling loss
• A bittersweet ending for Lindsey Vonn