After scoring only four runs in a pair of losses over the weekend at Texas, the Missouri softball team needed its offense to rebound.
The Tigers did just that Monday against a struggling Southern Illinois-Edwardsville team (22-18). The Tigers scored a total of 16 runs and gathered 23 hits against their hosts to sweep an afternoon doubleheader 11-1 in five innings in Game 1 and 6-0 in Game 2.
The No. 11 Tigers (29-8, 3-5) dropped out of the top 10 in national rankings for the first time since June 2009. Missouri has lost five of its past nine game with all the loses coming against Big 12 Conference opponents.
On Monday, the Tigers never trailed in either game and Missouri softball coach Ehren Earleywine emptied his bench using 20 of his 21 available players with eight of them getting hits.
Rhea Taylor highlighted Game 1, in which the Tigers produced a season-high 14 hits. Taylor went 2-for-3, scoring two runs, stealing a base and capping the game with her third home run of the season in the fifth inning. Missouri senior Jana Hainey (4-0), normally a relief pitcher, threw a five-inning complete game, allowing four hits, striking out one batter and walking one.
Game 2 saw Missouri senior Kristin Nottellmann (9-6) pitch a complete-game shutout. She allowed seven hits and one walk and struck out five batters.
Missouri junior Catherine Lee had a huge day going 4-for-5 in both games including two doubles and four RBIs.
The Tigers will play another road game at 3 p.m. Wednesday against Southern Illinois in Carbondale, Ill.