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Cleveland State playing to punch its ticket to March Madness on Tuesday

Cleveland State will face Oakland in the Horizon League Tournament title game on Tuesday with a spot in the NCAA Tournament on the line.

CLEVELAND — The Cleveland State men's basketball team is ready for "The Big Dance." And with one more win, the Vikings will punch their ticket to just that. 

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On Tuesday night, Cleveland State will face Oakland in the finals of the Horizon League Tournament in Indianapolis. Win, and the top-seeded Vikings will earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, which they haven't participated in since 2009. Lose, however, and the No. 3 Grizzlies will be representing the Verizon League in "The Big Dance," likely leaving Cleveland State on the outside looking in.

What follows is everything you need to know about Tuesday night's Verzion League Championship Game matchup:

Game info, how to watch on TV, betting line:

Date: Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Time: 7:00 p.m. ET

Location: Indiana Farmers Coliseum in Indianapolis, Indiana

TV channel: ESPN

Live Stream:  Watch ESPN

Betting line: Cleveland State -2.5

Over-under point total: 140

Game preview

Despite enjoying one of their best seasons in program history -- one in which second-year head coach Dennis Gates was named the Horizon League Coach of the Year -- the Vikings' path to Tuesday night has hardly been an easy one; In last week's quarterfinals, Cleveland State held off Purdue Fort Wayne in triple-overtime, before rallying to beat Milwaukee 71-65 in the semifinals on Monday night.

The Vikings are paced by senior guard Torrey Patton, who is averaging 14.6 points and 8.0 rebounds this season. Oakland, meanwhile, is led by guard Jalen Moore, who is averaging 17.8 points and 8.4 assists.

We will also have a live blog of tonight's game with photos, highlights, and more.

Watch: Dave "Dino" DeNatale and Nick Camino react to the Vikings win over Milwaukee

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