Q&A with Ernie Clement
April 30, 2016
By Lauren Moses
Sophomore Ernie Clement and the Virginia baseball team faces another ACC opponent this weekend at Pitt. The Cavaliers and the Panthers will play a doubleheader at 1 p.m. Saturday and finish the series on Sunday at 1 p.m. After Thursday’s practice Clement talked about his team’s recent run against ACC teams, his outlook on the rest of the season and what he likes to do when he is away from the field.
Q: You team is on an good run of late against in conference teams. What do you think has attributed to that?
A: In conference, I think we’ve really worked on a full range of things. Our pitching has been really great. At the beginning of the year, that was the main focus of ours because we had a lot of young guys who needed to contribute and I think Connor Jones has been doing such a great job, leading the staff, which has rubbed off on some of the other guys. Also, our lineup has been very consistent.
Q: You are facing another ACC team this weekend with Pitt. What are some things you and the team need to do to get the series win?
A: I think we need to keep handling the baseball and playing good, fundamental baseball. Everything has been going well lately, we’re on a little bit of a hot streak, so hopefully we can keep that going.
Q: What’s your outlook on the rest of the season?
A: Hopefully, we can win another National championship. I think we just need to continue to use the momentum we have and carry that to the end of the year and finish really strong.
Q: Has your second year been easier than your first since you know what is expected now? Academically and athletically?
A: Definitely. It was tough to balance academics and baseball, so this year I was able to have a plan and going forward I had a better balance and idea of what I needed to do. With baseball, a whole year of playing last year really helped and now, I can help out the younger guys.
Q: How do you prepare for games? Do you have a routine?
A: I just relax and try not to get too nervous.
Q: When you’re out in the field, what does the defense need to focus on to get outs?
A: Positioning is probably our biggest thing. We are always being told where to go, but a lot of it is own our own. We have to know where to go with each play and run what’s going to happen in our minds before it happens.
Q: How do you spend your free time when you’re not on the field?
A: Just hanging with the guys on the team. We are a pretty close group and we do lots of things together, like fishing or just hanging out.