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SEATTLE (AP) _ Lin Dunn resigned Tuesday as coach and general manager of the Seattle Storm.

Dunn compiled a 33-63 record in the three years that the WNBA team has been in existence. The Storm improved to 17-15 this season and reached the playoffs for the first time.

``The decision to step down was extremely difficult, but it's time for me to take a break,'' Dunn said in a news release.

Powered by this year's No. 1 pick Sue Bird, and Lauren Jackson, the top draft choice in 2001, the Storm won seven of its last nine regular-season games to earn the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

Seattle was swept out of its first-round series by the eventual champion Los Angeles Sparks.

``Lin has made a significant contribution to our organization since the Storm's inception three years ago,'' said team president Wally Walker. ``We thank her for all of her efforts and wish her well.''

Dunn was hired in 1999, assembling the team and helping build community support for it. In her first season in 2000, the Storm went 6-26. That was followed by a 10-22 mark in their second season.

In 1996, Dunn joined the ABL's Portland Power as head coach and general manager. In her second season, she led the team to the Western Conference championship and was the league's coach of the year for the 1997-98 season.

Seattle's search for a head coach will begin immediately, Walker said.

Billy McKinney, an executive with the Storm and the NBA's Seattle SuperSonics, will assume the general manager duties and oversee the coaching search.