Sports Imports partners with Side-Out Foundation to “Pink-Out” net systems for breast cancer awareness

The Side-Out Foundation + Sports Imports
volleyball net system

Columbus, Ohio—October 1, 2013— The Side-Out Foundation and Sports Imports have partnered to “pink out” net systems across the country for the national Dig Pink® October Rally, the foundation’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month initiative.

Organizations from grade schools to colleges host Dig Pink events to educate others about breast cancer and to raise funds to support the research that Side-Out sponsors.  They use the color pink for their events because it is widely accepted as the unifying shade of breast cancer and any sports fan knows the importance of color to band together players and fans.

Sports Imports, the industry’s leading net system manufacturer, joined the initiative, providing top fundraising schools with pink safety pads and net tapes for their official Dig Pink fundraising match in October.  They also hosted a Dig Pink Kick-Off Tri-Match on September 28th, donating $5 for every kill scored by all of the three teams.  Sports Imports will  award the overall top fundraiser each year with a free set of fully custom upright pads for their program.

“Breast cancer hits close to home for a lot of players, coaches, and fans in the volleyball community,” said Cyndie Dunlap-Cullinan, president and CEO of Sports Imports. “We are eager to promote breast health/cancer awareness and to help raise money for the research and patient support projects that Side-Out funds.”

Custom Dig Pink safety pads and net tapes will be provided to eight schools and several national club tournaments around the country to use during their own Dig Pink match.  This year’s National Dig Pink October Rally “pinked-out” net system recipients are:

  1. Orestimba High School—Newman, CA—October 1, 2013
  2. The John Cooper School— The Woodlands, TX—October 11, 2013
  3. Southern Lehigh High School—Center Valley, PA—October 15, 2013
  4. Naperville Central High School—Naperville, IL—October 15, 2013
  5. University of North Carolina at Charlotte—Charlotte, NC—October 18, 2013
  6. Massapequa High School—Massapequa, NY—October 18, 2013
  7. Penn State University—University Park, PA—October 23, 2013
  8. Downey High School—Downey, CA—October 24, 2013

Supporters can tune in to ESPN3 at 7pm on October 23rd to see Penn State women’s volleyball play their Dig Pink match against Ohio State on a custom pinked-out net system. Pink pads and net tapes will also be sent to Big South, Capitol Hill Classic, and Colorado Crossroads national qualifying tournaments in the spring for day two of play to support the 2014 Dig Pink Tour Powered by Tournament Magic.

Rick Dunetz, executive director at The Side-Out Foundation, is looking forward to working with Sports Imports:  “They are well-known and respected throughout the volleyball community, and their support is a testament to the support of the volleyball community as a whole.    Our new partnership will allow for a unique way to honor the top fundraisers while also benefiting the research Side-Out values most.”

To find out what you can do to support breast cancer and education and research, visit To purchase your own Dig Pink safety pads or net tapes, visit A portion of each purchase is donated to The Side-Out Foundation.

About The Side-Out Foundation

The Side-Out Foundation was founded in 2004 after an inspiring high school volleyball season.  Rick Dunetz was challenged with the task of restoring confidence to a struggling Virginia high school team around the same time that his mom, Gloria, was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time.  Gloria was devastated when doctors told her there was no possibility of a cure.  She had metastatic breast cancer (stage 4), and treatment would continue for the rest of her life.

She found hope and motivation in watching Rick’s underdog varsity team compete and advance to win the district finals.  Meanwhile, Rick noticed a connection developing between his mom and his players, one of mutual respect and encouragement.  He wondered if volleyball could have a similar impact on other patients and players, and the beginnings of The Side-Out Foundation were born.

Side-Out is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that unites volleyball players and coaches to have them work toward the common goal of making a significant and identifiable difference in the lives of breast cancer patients and their families.  The organization’s goal is to advance clinical trials, increase patient support services and educate communities.  Side-Out supports teams nationwide in their Dig Pink volleyball campaigns, clinics and other fundraising efforts.   The foundation offers practical support for fundraising as well as educational information to help athletes, coaches and communities become effective advocates for breast cancer.  It contributes the funds to organizations that serve breast cancer patients, whether it be in the form of research, medical services or patient support.

Gloria passed away in August, 2010, and her memory will always inspire Side-Out to forge ahead for new research.

About Sports Imports

Founded in 1976 by people who love volleyball, Sports Imports is recognized as the renowned authority in national and international volleyball competitions. Sports Imports has provided quality net systems for every Olympic volleyball competition and NCAA championship since inception. As the first company to bring safe, in-ground net systems to the United States, Sports Imports’ experienced team provides expert advice with customized solutions and support to assure the best possible value.

Sports Imports was founded with a mission to provide a safe and dependable net system for competitive volleyball. Three decades later, with installations in 20,000 gymnasiums across the U.S. and over 88 percent of all Division I programs, the company is still totally focused on the needs of coaches and the volleyball industry.

To learn more about what products and services are available at Sports Imports, visit