Rutgers softball suffered a sweep at the hands of Nebraska this weekend. Photo: Rutgers Athletics.

Rutger softball improved to 7-0 to start the 2023 campaign after an 8-1 victory over Missouri State, Friday morning, and a 16-1 win over Mississippi Valley State, Friday afternoon. The double-header sweep is part Mardi Gras Classic that Rutgers is participating in this weekend.

In the morning contest against Missouri State, Rutgers plated six of its eight runs in the opening two frames of the ballgame.

Calista Collins had a two-run single in the bottom of the first to give RU a 3-0 lead. Payton Lincavage tacked on to that lead with a two-run triple in the bottom half of the second to push RU to a 5-0 lead. Ryann Orange drove in a run on a fielding error to make it 6-0.

Ashley Hitchock gave up a run on four hits over four innings of work. She is 2-0 to open the season.

In the nightcap, Rutgers offense exploded for 16 runs on 14 hits against Mississippi Valley State.

Morgan Smith had three RBI on a pair of hits, while Ryann Orange had a pair of RBI on a 2-for-2 evening. Kyleigh Sand scored a pair of runs on a single and a RBI. Megan Herka and Calista Collins each had a pair of hits in the nightcap.

Rutgers will face Mississippi Valley State again on Saturday afternoon at 1:30, before squaring off with South Alabama at 6:30.