Ohio Gov. John Kasich maintained that the Republican presidential race was moving to his "home court" after a series of largely disappointing results in the Super Tuesday contests.
Kasich had followed up a second-place finish in the New Hampshire primary by placing fifth in the South Carolina primary and the Nevada caucuses. On Tuesday, runner-up finishes in Vermont and Massachusetts were canceled out by fourth-place finishes in Texas and Virginia, as well as fifth-place finishes in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Minnesota, Oklahoma and Tennessee.
In a speech to supporters in Mississippi, Kasich used a college basketball analogy to discuss his plan for the upcoming races.
"We're almost to March Madness," Kasich said, "and you know what they all struggle for, home court advantage.
"We're heading north right on to my home court with Michigan, and then, I’ll tell you now, we will beat Donald Trump in the state of Ohio."
Michigan holds its primary March 8, with Ohio voting March 15. A total of 125 delegates are at stake in the two Rust Belt states. However, at least one recent poll has shown Kasich trailing Trump among Republican voters in the Buckeye State, while most Michigan polls show Trump in the lead by double digits.
Even if Kasich does pull off the double victory, it's unclear how he would capture enough delegates to catch Trump, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz or Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, all of whom recorded victories on Tuesday.
Retired neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson beat out Kasich for fourth place in a number of Southern states, but that was about the only good news for his beleaguered campaign.
Addressing supporters in Baltimore Tuesday, Carson vowed to keep fighting, telling supporters that the political system was "rotten to the core" and said Republicans and Democrats alike had "weaved such a complex web."
"I am not ready to quit trying to untangle it yet."