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Bettendorf's Justin Wehr talks to members of the media after the Bulldogs won their quarterfinal game at Bettendorf High School last November. Wehr will continue his football career at Augustana College in the fall.

Andy Abeyta, QUAD-CITY TIMES

Justin Wehr understands the primary reason Steve Bell was at almost every Bettendorf football game last fall was to watch his son Carter play quarterback.

It allowed Wehr an opportunity to forge a relationship with the Augustana football coach.

Wehr has decided to continue his football career across the river with the Vikings. He was one of 18 Bettendorf student-athletes recognized during a ceremony Friday afternoon.

"He kept in contact with me and cares about me," Wehr said. "I spend time with Carter all the time, and he was always checking on how I was doing."

Wehr plans to start out as a placekicker at Augustana, but the door is possibly open for him to play quarterback down the road. He was the Bulldogs' backup quarterback to Bell this past fall.

"I didn't get to show all my talents because Carter Bell is going to be a Division I athlete and a stud on the field," Wehr said.

As a kicker, Wehr was 53 of 56 on point-after attempts and 5 of 7 on field goals with a long of 38.

"I feel pretty confident with my ability to get a starting job as a freshman," Wehr said. "I want to play, and kicking is probably my best opportunity as a freshman."

Jackson Stamper will continue his cross country career at Creighton University. Stamper was drawn in by the Bluejays' finance program.

"I was hoping wherever I went, I'd have the option to run," Stamper said. "I went up there for an academic competition and was offered a spot in a program for finance.

"I reached out to the team, and everything fell into place. It is icing on top of the cake."

Bettendorf had three boys announce plans to continue their soccer careers — Zach Elias (University of Dubuque) along with Brant Mueller and Joey Parker (Central College). Justine Pearson, the goalkeeper for the Bettendorf girls, will head to Hobart and William Smith Colleges in New York.

Elise Davis and Payton Leonard will continue their trapshooting careers at Hawkeye Community College and Iowa Central Community College, respectively.

Others announcing their college plans were Trinity Borland (cross country and track/Wartburg College), Jacob Panjwani (tennis/Wheaton College), Lita Solbrig (volleyball/Wisconsin-Platteville), Natalie Stine (golf/Wisconsin-Platteville), Devynn Wakefield (basketball/Lake Region State College), Dustin Harris and Mason Morris (football/Loras), Ben Wilson (football/Wisconsin-Platteville), Allison Staley (rowing/Central Oklahoma) and Eve Berg (swimming/Iowa Central Community College).

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Sports Editor

Prep sports editor, with emphasis on covering the Mississippi Athletic Conference and Iowa area high schools. I've been in sports journalism for 17 years, the last five at the Quad-City Times.