WASHINGTON -- It seemed like Syracuse on the field, wearing its bright orange jerseys and carrying the top ranking in the nation on its shoulders. But the true Orangemen never showed up.
No fast-break goals. More than a few dropped passes. And the style and spark of the run-and-gun Orangemen attack was lost in a slow-paced set offense.
Nevertheless, No. 1 Syracuse coasted to a 13-8 victory over No. 11 Georgetown before 2,123 at 1,200-seat Kehoe Field. Rob Kavovit scored a career-high three goals and three other Orangemen added two goals each.
"We didn't have the run-and-gun today because it's a new team and a new look, but we can be explosive," Syracuse coach Roy Simmons Jr. said. "Being the first game and away from home, we were a little timid."
While the Orangemen attack got bogged down, the senior defensive unit of Chad Smith, Hans Schmid and Ric Beardsley took control.
Syracuse (1-0) held the Hoyas without a shot for the first five minutes and to two goals in the first half. The Orangemen also didn't allow a goal for three separate stretches of seven minutes or longer.
The bigger Orangemen contained Georgetown with hard checking, highlighted by a shot from Beardsley that knocked Jim Fenzel's helmet off.
"The defense always gets blamed when we lose, so it's nice now to see us getting noticed when we win," Smith said. "Our defense still wants to charge the fast-break, but never really got it to full speed. It could be adjusting to new chemistry or practicing on a half field for five weeks."
Whatever the reason, the Orangemen looked sluggish.
The game was scoreless for the first 8 1/2 minutes. The upstart Hoyas (0-1) jumped ahead 1-0 when freshman midfielder Dan Shea scored from 15 yards with 3:25 left in the first period.
The Orangemen quickly answered with two goals in 18 seconds to go ahead 2-1 with 1:16 left. Nick Licameli and Doug Jackson, who totaled a combined four goals last season, supplied the scoring.
Pulling away after halftime, Syracuse scored on three consecutive shots for a 7-2 advantage with 13:04 left in the third. The Orangemen held at least a four-goal lead for the next 25 minutes as Georgetown failed to score back-to-back goals.
With 3:06 left in the game, Georgetown collected itself for its first run. The Hoyas scored three times to close within 11-8.
"It's a lot different than what I thought it was going to be like," said Syracuse freshman Casey Powell, who had two goals and an assist. "They were a lot more powerful and tougher than I expected."
Syracuse closed with two goals in the final 23 seconds.
"It was very good for our kids to play Syracuse early in the season," Georgetown coach Dave Urick said. "I even think we outplayed them in the fourth quarter although it didn't show up on the scoreboard."