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March Madness: No. 6 seed Ohio State women’s basketball to face First Four winner in NCAA tournament

After exiting the Big Ten Tournament, the Buckeyes are ready for a little postseason redemption.

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

After the Ohio State women’s basketball Buckeyes were knocked out of the Big Ten Tournament, losing 70-62 to Indiana in the tournament semifinals on March 5, it’s been a long wait until Selection Sunday. Now we know that the Buckeyes will face either Missouri State or Florida State. The Buckeyes will play in Baton Rouge, La. on Saturday, March 19. Tip-off is set for 2:30 p.m. ET, on ESPNU.

Missouri State and Florida State each join the NCAA Tournament’s First Four play-in games as at-large selections. The 24-7 Missouri State Bears lost to the Northern Iowa Panthers 63-57 on Saturday in the championship game of the Missouri Valley conference tournament.

The Bears played a tough non-conference schedule; they beat a ranked Virginia Tech side from the ACC and lost by just eight to the LSU Tigers.

Florida State entered the 2022 ACC Tournament as a No. 9 seed and beat No. 8 Boston College until they were beaten by eventual tournament champions — and NCAA No. 1 seed — NC State.

If OSU faces the Seminoles, it won’t be the first time the Buckeyes take on a team from the ACC this season. On Dec. 1, the Scarlet and Gray met the Orange of Syracuse in a shootout 97-91 defeat for Ohio State, their only non-conference loss of the season.

The Seminoles aren’t a stranger to the B1G either, playing against two of Ohio State’s conference mates this season. Florida State split games against the B1G, losing to Purdue and beating Illinois.

Ohio State head coach Kevin McGuff and the Buckeyes return to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2017-18 season. Since then, Ohio State lost in the first round of the WNIT in 2019, had their 2020 NCAA Tournament canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and played no postseason basketball last season, due to self-imposed sanctions.

In McGuff’s history at OSU, the Sweet Sixteen is the furthest he’s led Ohio State. Prior to joining the Scarlet and Gray for the 2013-14 season, McGuff’s longest tournament run was with Xavier University, where they reached the Elite Eight in the 2010 tournament.

So far this season, the Buckeyes have already had a standout year. After entering the season losing three starters (two to the transfer portal and one to injury), Ohio State adapted with a new roster and won a share of the B1G Championship.

Led on offense by guards Jacy Sheldon and Taylor Mikesell, the Buckeyes look to bounce back from a tough defeat in Indianapolis and make a tournament run. Both were named to the All-B1G First Team, with Sheldon voted into the team unanimously.

If the Buckeyes advance past the winner of Missouri State and Florida State, they face either the LSU Tigers or Jackson State University.