Hart girls basketball leaning on versatility with lack of numbers

Annie Christofferson dribbles towards the basket against Burroughs at the Burroughs Tournament on Friday. Christofferson is one of the Indians’ top returners this season. Haley Sawyer/The Signal

With a nine-player roster, Hart girls basketball doesn’t necessarily have an ideal supply. But that doesn’t mean they’re short on resources.

“The nine that we have are all capable of playing multiple positions,” said coach Terra Palmer. “I have about four that can play every spot on the floor.

“When you look down the bench and you don’t see 15 kids, but you see kids who are all capable of filling any role, it’s a good problem to have.”

Take Annie Christofferson, for example. The senior fills shooting guard and small forward roles. One of her most important characteristics is her ability to score.

MORE: Experienced Hart boys basketball group once again Foothill League contenders

On Tuesday against LaSalle at the Burroughs Tournament, she scored a career-high 40 points. Although she’s an offensive powerhouse, she’s more than happy to spread the wealth.

“I get a lot of freedom and everyone gets a lot of freedom to just kind of play their game, so we can shoot but we also are really focused on playing selfless basketball and really sharing the ball with our teammates,” said Christofferson.

Trudy Larkins is another returner and is capable as a center/forward. Christofferson was eager to call Larkins one of the top rebounders on the team, along with Aly Kaneshiro.

The expectations for Kaneshiro this year are heightened, too.

“Her role is different this year,” said Palmer. “We need her to score now. We’ve always counted on her to rebound and finish.”

Haylyn Nguyen returns for her third year as a starting point guard and Emily Munoz is further developing her ability to attack the basket as her minutes grow.

Emma Allen was pulled up from the JV squad to join the varsity team this year as a sophomore. Allen is one of the most versatile players on the team, according to Palmer, and brings defensive, rebounding and shooting abilities.

“Emma Allen has really stepped up,” said Christofferson. “She’s only a sophomore and she’s going to be really good this year and going forward in the next couple years. So it should be really fun.”

Hart finished second in the Foothill League last season, behind co-champions Canyon and Valencia.

This season, the Indians are gunning for the top spot.

“Rather than hoping that we’re going to win league, we know we’re going to win,” Larkins said. “We have that confidence this year where like, we want to win and we want to go get that title.”

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