|High School:||Central Catholic|
Tyler Nelson looks to become the Stags’ next 1,000-point scorer in 2016-17, needing just 164 points to reach the prestigious plateau. He comes off his best offensive season of his two-year career with a team-high 529 points which translated into a 16.0 scoring average. The guard earned a spot on the All-MAAC second team after placing sixth among the MAAC scoring leaders. He led the conference in free throw percentage at .880 (147 of 167), a number which was also good enough for 14th in the nation. He netted 2.0 three pointers per game which was ranked 12th in the MAAC as his 66 long-range jumpers raised his career total to 130 in 63 games. He netted three or more three pointers in 10 games during 2015-16, giving him Nelson started all 33 games last season, giving him 63 career starts. Nelson led the team in steals with 44 which ranked 12th in the MAAC at 1.3 per game, and placed second among his teammates with 95 assists. The guard ended the season with 15 straight double-digit scoring games including six with 20 or more points. He netted 20-plus points 11 times, highlighted by his career-best of 27 markers against Niagara in Bridgeport.
Nelson emerged as one of the MAAC’s top freshmen which was backed up by his appearance on the MAAC’s All-Rookie team. The guard became one of the conference’s top three-point threats by netting 64 shots from behind the three-point line, the most since Jermaine Clark’ posted 70 three pointers as a freshman. Nelson averaged 17.5 points per game over the final six regular-season games and hit double-figures in each of those contests. The rookie scored 10 or more points in 15 games, second only to Marcus Glbert (27 games). He scored 24 points against South Dakota in his fourth career game, his only 20-point performance until he reached the mark in back-to-back games late in the year (26 vs. Saint Peter’s and 23 at Canisius). He was one of three Stags to have more assists (41) than turnovers (40). He just missed reaching the top ten for three-point field goal percentage in a season as his .424 field goal percentage was shy of Michael Van Schaick’s mark of .430 (2005-06 season). His three-point shooting was effective when he could take multiple shots, making 61 of 135 attempts (.451) when he tried four or more three-point field goals in a game. When he shot three or less three-point attempts in a contest, he made 3 of 16 shots (.188).
Nelson joined the Stags basketball program after securing the Massachusetts Gatorade Player of the Year award in 2013-14. He is an All-Conference player who scored 1,443 career points while attending Central Catholic High School. He took his high school team to the state championship game with a 22-6 record before falling four points short. Nelson averaged 22 points and six rebounds per game as a senior and netted 70 three-point field goals. He ended his career with 230 three pointers, averaging better than two made per game. He was named the Lawrence Eagle-Tribune Most Valuable Player for the second straight year following the 2013-14 campaign. He was a two-time Merrimack Valley Conference (MVC) Player of the Year and a two-time ESPN Boston All-State player. As a junior, Nelson averaged 16.2 points per game and was named to the All-MVC Team. He helped the Raiders win the MVC Large and Division 1 North sectional title. Nelson also was the MVC Most Valuable Player as a golfer, winning a conference individual championship during his career.