Back to school

Nov 27, 2000
*For those of you who have kids* :D
Back to schooling June 11. Two classes are from 8 to 10 in the morning and another two classes from 1 to 3 in the afternoon. A class will be made up of 10 students.

Before the schoolyear begins, Ritualo said two summer programs will be introduced. The first is a basketball camp for 3 to 7-year-olds from April 18 to May 18 at the Amoranto covered courts, near the school. And the second is an art class for 18 sessions, also from April 18 to May 18.

Ritualo is personally taking care of the basketball camp, which will run for an hour on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. At least 20 kids are expected to sign up. Assisting Ritualo in the camp are Javier Nunag, Jenkins Mesina, Britt Reroma, Macoy Marcos and Mark Jomalesa.

Dizon will supervise the art class from 9 to 10 every morning at the school.

The oldest of four children and the only boy, Ritualo said his mother Baby and girlfriend Papat Aquino are backing him up all the way in this undertaking. Ritualo and Aquino have been an item for about nine years. They plan to marry in about two years after establishing themselves in their respective careers. Aquino works at Citibank.

A blessing of the school, which occupies 170 square feet of space, is scheduled at 5 p.m. on April 14.

Meanwhile, Ritualo and the other players of the national squad leave for the US tonight to attend the two-week Joe Abunassar impact camp in Carson City. Last year, Ritualo was with the Talk N Text team that enrolled at the Abunassar camp, joining NBA players Tyronn Lue, Jahidi White, Dahntay Jones, Al Harrington and Andrei Kirilenko.

Abunassar, a Bobby Knight disciple, is credited for polishing the skills of NBA cagers Kevin Garnett, Tayshaun Prince, Chauncey Billups, Chris Duhon, Erick Dampier and Sebastian Telfair.

"Its a great camp," said Ritualo. "Im looking forward to a lot of hard work and a lot of learning. You go back to basics and they stress repetition until you get things perfect. Its a good opportunity to bond with the guys, too. Our spirits are high. Coach Chot (Reyes) gives us confidence all the time."

Ritualo said while the ultimate goal is to qualify for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the team isnt looking that far ahead.

"First things first," said Ritualo. "We've got the SEABA championship to focus on. After that, we'll prepare for the next tournament and so on. Were not getting ahead of ourselves."

Ritualo, 27, said it's an honor to play for the country. He's worn the national colors in SEABA, ABC Youth, Brunei Cup and the Global Hoops Summit but never in a major event like the FIBA-Asia championships, SEA Games or Asian Games. If the Philippines makes it to the SEABA finals in May, the reward is a spot in the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifiers in Tokushima, Japan, in July.

Ritualo said he realizes how important his role is as a shooter in the national team. He makes it a point to knock down 200 triples at practice every day. Hes now looking to increase his connections to 400.

Ritualo's hoop heroes are Allan Caidic, Kobe Bryant, Ray Allen and Tracy McGrady; all sharpshooters. He draws inspiration from the game's most dangerous riflemen.

"I read somewhere that Kobe hits 1,000 practice shots a day from all angles," said Ritualo. "No wonder, when he scores 43 in a game, he's not satisfied. I think he wants to score 50 every game. I don't know if I can ever take as many shots a day but I'm building up."
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