HOPEWELL TOWNSHIP (Mercer) — The shocking death of a Pennington School graduate at a nature preserve last night is under investigation by homicide detectives.

Phillip Urban, 20, of Manalapan, was shot and killed Saturday evening at around 7 p.m., according to Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo Onofri. He graduated from the Pennington School this past June after attending for his junior and senior years, a school spokesperson confirmed to New Jersey 101.5.

Hopewell Township police found Urban's body "slumped over" in the driver's seat of a white Mercedes C300. The vehicle was located on a trail at the Hopewell Valley Nature Preserve near Harbourton-Woodsville Road.

Urban was taken to Capital Health Regional Medical Center and pronounced dead. He died from a gunshot wound, Onofri said.

Authorities believe Urban had planned to meet someone at the preserve and was shot during their meeting. Homicide detectives with the Mercer County Prosecutor's Office and Hopewell Township police are investigating.

The freshman forward, who stood six feet six inches tall, played his first college basketball game for Post University in Connecticut last month.

Post University CEO and President John Hopkins said in a statement to New Jersey 101.5 that the university will be offering counseling to students and associates.

"The Post University community is heartbroken to learn of the death of freshman student, Philip Urban last night," Hopkins said. "As a member of the Men’s basketball team and a Business Administration major, Philip modeled the attributes of leadership, commitment and hard work on the court and in the classroom. "

Hopkins extended his hope that Urban's family, friends, and others affected by his passing could "find strength during this extremely difficult time."

In high school, Urban played varsity basketball for the Pennington School. He also played for the New Jersey Panthers, an independent basketball program.

New England Recruiting Report, a website focused on identifying young talent, called Urban "a highlight reel waiting to happen."

New Jersey 101.5 has reached out to Post University for comment on Urban's death.

Rick Rickman is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at richard.rickman@townsquaremedia.com

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