The Ohio State basketball team shows their toughness vs. Virginia Tech

The Ohio State basketball team continued their run toward an NIT championship after defeating Virginia Tech on Saturday using their toughness.

Mar 15, 2024; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes forward Jamison Battle (10) controls the
Mar 15, 2024; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes forward Jamison Battle (10) controls the / Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

The Ohio State basketball team took on Virginia Tech on Saturday night in the second round of the NIT. The game was held at the Schott. But unless you went to the game, you were unlikely able to watch because the game was relegated to ESPN+ due to the women's tournament.

Nonetheless, the Buckeyes put on a show. They were able to take down Virginia Tech 81-73 after showing some toughness down the stretch. It's clear that this team has more poise late in close games than they did under Chris Holtmann. That's a good quality to have. It was a better showing than the first game against Cornell.

Jamison Battle led the way for the Ohio State basketball team. He had 21 points and 10 rebounds with most of his points coming from the free-throw line. He was 17-18 from the line. In fact, the entire team shot it well from the charity stripe, going 29-32 from the line.

Five Buckeyes scored in double-digits as they showed off their depth once again. Jake Diebler's calling card so far has been allowing the team to go deeper into their bench. It has worked most of the time and it worked again on Saturday night.

Ohio State won this game despite shooting just 39% from the field as a team. They were able to get to the foul line though, a show of their toughness and willingness to seek contact. If that wouldn't have happened, the Ohio State basketball team's season would have ended.

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With the win, the Buckeyes are now in the Elite Eight of the NIT. They will play on Tuesday at 7 pm on ESPN against the winner of Wake Forest and Georgia. Ohio State has a real chance to win that game and make the Final Four. This team clearly is not ready for the season to end and they have something to prove.