The Mocs (2-3) trailed 35-25 at halftime but tied the game midway through the second half before Bell took charge. His 20 points included 5-for-6 shooting on 3-pointers and 5 of 6 from the foul line. His last two 3-point baskets gave Chattanooga leads of 57-54 and 60-57.
Deric Rudolph, who came off the bench to lead Savannah State (1-5) with 15 points, hit a 3-pointer to tie it 60-60 with 47 seconds left. Bell’s two free throws with 26 seconds remaining gave Chattanooga the lead for good. The Tigers drew within 64-63 with five seconds left but Bell hit one of two foul shots. Preston Blackmon missed a 3-pointer just before the final buzzer.
Chris Early had 15 points for Chattanooga. Joshua Montgomery scored 12 for Savannah State.