Former SBHS star Roberto Nelson signs with Italian pro team

Roberto Nelson is taking his game overseas.

The former Santa Barbara High and Oregon State basketball star signed his first professional contract with Basket Brescia Leonessa of Italy.

The 6-4 Nelson recently played for the Charlotte Hornets NBA Summer League team and worked out for three NBA teams before signing with Brescia, a team in Italy’s second division or A2 Gold. Financial details were not released.

At Oregon State, he finished as the program’s fourth all-time scorer (1,745 points), averaging 14.1 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 124 games. As a senior, he led the Pac-12 in scoring with a 20.7 points-per-game average. He is the first Oregon State player to lead the conference in scoring since Gary Payton in 1990.

Ferencz Bartocci, the Leonessa Brescia general manager, said on the club’s website that he saw Nelson play in the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament in April and was impressed.

“He’s a player who has convinced us with his technical features and the attitude that he always puts in the field,” Bartocci said in translated statement.

Nelson joins SBHS alum Taylor Rochestie in Europe. Rochestie currently plays for BC Nizhny Novgord in Russia.