Chapecoense 'warriors' crowned Santa Catarina state champions

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The Copa Sudamericana holders were left celebrating their first major title since December's tragedy despite going down to Avai

The incredible revival of Chapecoense continued on Sunday as the tragedy-struck team lifted the Santa Catarina Championship. 

Chapecoense were forced to rebuild from scratch in 2017 after seeing almost their entire squad perish in December's air crash in the outskirts of Medellin, Colombia. 

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But with a side made up almost entirely of youngsters and loanees from fellow Brazilian sides, they were crowned the kings of Santa Catarina for the second consecutive year after beating Avai in the final. 

The first leg of the decider had finished 1-0 in Chape's favour, while the return yielded the same scoreline only this time in Avai's favour. 

Chapecoense, however, were left celebrating thanks to a better record in the league season, and retained the title they won in 2016. 

"This title is for all those warriors who are up there," Jackson Follmann, the goalkeeper who lost a leg in the accident, told reporters after the game.

With six Catarinense titles Chapecoense now lie fifth in the state's all-time standings, behind Figueirense (17 titles), Avai (16), Joinville (12) and Criciuma (10).

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