Men's Basketball

Ohio State Handles Virginia Tech Hokies 81-73 to Advance to NIT Quarterfinals

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Not finished yet. No. 2 seed Ohio State (22-13) handles the No. 3 seed Virginia Tech (19-15) to advance to the NIT quarterfinals.

The Buckeyes led the entire second half of play, resulting in an 81-73 victory over the Hokies in Columbus on Saturday in the second round of the NIT.

Ohio State was led by Jamison Battle, who had 21 points on 2-of-8 attempts from the paint and the remainder from the free throw line. Battle also led the way with 10 rebounds. Felix Okpara contributed 13 points, six rebounds, and two blocks. Guards Dale Bonner and Bruce Thornton each contributed 12 points, and Roddy Gayle Jr. added 11.

Virginia Tech scored the first seven points of the game, but the Buckeyes went on a 10-0 run and another 8-0 run to reach a 34-21 in the first half of play. The Buckeyes never trailed from that point.

Ohio State led 67-64 at the under-4 media timeout as Virginia Tech battled back from almost a 10 point deficit all through the second half. The Buckeyes were held scoreless for almost four minutes but free throws and getting to the line sealed the win for the Buckeyes and allowed them to hold their lead as time expired.

Both teams combined for a total of 32 fouls in the second half of play. Battle shot 17-of-18 from the free throw line and the Buckeyes as a team were good for 91 percent, making 29 of 32 attempts. Ohio State was also effective from the glass and won the rebounding battle 40-38.

Virginia Tech was led by its guards Hunter Cattoor and Sean Pedulla, who each contributed 18 points for the Hokies.

Up next, Ohio State will face the winner of No. 4 seed Georgia and the No. 1 seed Wake Forest on Tuesday night.

Photo via Ohio State Dept. of Athletics. 

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